Evotec and CHDI Foundation, Inc. Extend Collaboration to Fight Huntington's Disease


  • Strategic alliance with CHDI aimed at accelerating efforts to develop drugs against Huntington's disease  
  •  Entails research revenue of up to US$ 37.5 million over the next three years  
  • One of the largest strategic drug discovery alliances within Evotec  


Hamburg, Germany | Abingdon, UK - 14 January 2010: Evotec AG (Frankfurt Stock Exchange: EVT, TecDAX) today announced the extension of its collaboration with CHDI Foundation, Inc. (CHDI) through to the end of 2012. The collaboration, which is aimed at finding new treatments for Huntington's disease and represents one of the largest joint innovation drug discovery CNS alliances within Evotec, will provide Evotec with up to US$ 37.5 million in research funding over the next three years. Evotec has been providing research and innovation support to CHDI since 2006.

"As a proven leader in the field of drug discovery, Evotec continues to be an important strategic partner in our search for effective treatments for Huntington's disease. Their integrated drug discovery capabilities are helping us advance numerous drug candidates towards the clinic and we look forward to continuing to work with Evotec over the coming years" said Dr Robert Pacifici, Chief Scientific Officer of CHDI.

The extension of this collaboration is a further validation of Evotec's broad expertise in CNS drug discovery and development. Evotec will provide a full range of neurological research activities and expertise to CHDI, including integrated biology and chemistry supported by compound and library management, target validation, screening, computational chemistry, in vitro and in vivo PK and protein crystallography. Evotec has made a significant investment to put together an integrated platform to provide drug discovery solutions, especially within the area of neuroscience.

Dr Werner Lanthaler, Chief Executive Officer of Evotec, commented: "We are delighted that CHDI has chosen to further extend our strategic alliance. We view this as an important step in our work with CHDI to develop novel therapies for Huntington's disease and meet this urgent medical need. At the same time it will allow Evotec to gain further experience in defining the underlying mechanisms of other neurodegenerative diseases." 


About Huntington's disease

Huntington's disease is a familial disease caused by a mutation in the huntingtin gene. Each child of a parent with the mutation in the huntingtin gene has a 50-50 chance of inheriting the mutation. As a result of carrying the mutation, an individual's brain cells fail and die leading to cognitive and physical impairments that, over the course of the disease, significantly impair the individual's quality of life and ultimately cause death. Symptoms of Huntington's disease, which generally develop in midlife and become progressively more debilitating as time passes, can also develop in infancy or old age. Once overt symptoms start, patients live for about 15 to 20 years. One person in 10,000 is believed to carry a mutation in the huntingtin gene. There is currently no way to delay the onset of symptoms or slow the progression of Huntington's disease.

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