Recursion Pharmaceuticals Announces Funding Support for Ataxia-Telangiectasia
March 2015 – Press Release from Recursion Pharmaceuticals
Salt Lake City – Recursion Pharmaceuticals, an emerging biotech company today announced receipt of a research award from the A-T Children’s Project, which seeks to support research for the disease ataxia-telangiectasia.
Ataxia-telangiectasia (A-T) is a rare genetic disease that attacks children, causing progressive loss of muscle control, immune system problems, and a high rate of cancer. The award will be used to support Recursion’s efforts to build a many-dimensional cellular model of the disease to be used in future drug screening efforts.
Chris Gibson, Ph.D., CEO of Recursion Pharmaceuticals remarked: “We are grateful to the A-T Children’s Project for this award which will enable us to rapidly deploy our innovative drug discovery technology towards Ataxia-telangiectasia. As a young company, the support and trust of foundations like the A-T-Children’s Project is critical to our ability to apply our technology across as many diseases as possible.”
Recursion’s technology, which combines experimental biology and bioinformatics, is especially useful for drug discovery in rare genetic diseases where our understanding of the complete molecular picture of the diseases is lacking. A-T, which is due to mutations in the gene ATM, is just such a disease. Loss of function of ATM results in myriad complex and interconnected molecular changes in cells. Recursion is able to look for structural changes in such cells which can act as a broad readout of the disease.
According to Brad Margus, Volunteer President and Founder of the A-T Children’s Project, “Recursion’s cutting-edge technology is a great match for us. We are eager to identify potential biomarkers, screening assays and therapeutic targets for this brutal disease, and Recursion’s unique profiling approach will accelerate our progress. And even more exciting, Recursion may learn that already-existing drugs hold promise for kids with A-T.”
Rather than starting from scratch trying to discover new drugs, Recursion specifically looks for known drugs that can be recycled as treatments for diseases like A-T. As such, the company hopes to be able to translate laboratory discoveries into treatments for patients at a much faster rate.
About A-T Children’s Project – The A-T Children’s Project is a nonprofit organization that raises funds to support and coordinate first-rate biomedical research projects, scientific conferences and a clinical center aimed at finding life-improving therapies and a cure for ataxia-telangiectasia.
About Recursion Pharmaceuticals - Recursion Pharmaceuticals, LLC, is an emerging drug discovery company founded in 2013 based on technology developed at the University of Utah. Recursion uses a novel drug screening platform to efficiently reposition known drugs and shelved pharmaceutical assets to treat rare genetic diseases. The company’s focus on rare genetic diseases is much-needed, as there are more than 5,000 such conditions that together affect millions of Americans, and more than 95 percent of these diseases have no approved therapy. Recursion’s novel drug screening platform combines experimental biology and bioinformatics in a massively parallel system to quickly and efficiently identify treatments for multiple rare genetic diseases. The core of the approach revolves around high-throughput automated screening using high-content assays in human cells, which allows the near simultaneous modeling of hundreds of genetic diseases. Rich data from these assays is probed using advanced statistical and machine learning approaches, and the effects of thousands of known drugs and shelved drug candidates can be investigated efficiently to identify those holding the most promise for the treatment of any one rare genetic disease.