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Astex Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Message Board

  • michaelplongo michaelplongo Apr 14, 2013 3:05 PM Flag

    Astex codevelopes Epimerox, a new antibiotic with potential?

    From an April 14 article in Digital Journal by Tim Sandle
    A new broad range antibiotic called Epimerox, has been developed by scientists at The Rockefeller University and Astex Pharmaceuticals. The antibiotic has been found to kill a wide range of bacteria, including drug-resistant Staphylococcus (MRSA).
    What is different about epimerox is that it targets a weaknesses in certain bacteria. Many bacteria are infected by types of viruses called phages. Phages, or more accurately, bacteriophages, are viruses that infect bacteria. Phages have been subject to million years of evolution and have developed mechanisms for infiltrating bacteria, surviving within the bacterial cell, and ultimately destroying of the host to release replicated viral progeny.
    The phage infection does appear to create an Achilles's heel in terms of scientists studying what the phage does and then replicating this activity with a chemical (with a view to this chemical becoming a new class of antibiotic).

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    • I spoke to the investor relations manager about three weeks ago about this as I was concerned that it was important and was not getting reported. I was told that this was very far down the road and the royalty that they would receive was so small that it was not material and that is why they did not report it.

    • Just read the publish article. This compound was not found with astex discovery, but with CLIMB, supergens discovery. Dr. M may have not screwed up by buying Montigen? Here is from the article:

      "Based on CLIMB® guided design, 62 compounds were synthesized and tested for B. anthracis growth inhibition. Epimerox, the most potent inhibitor, was chosen for further pharmacological evaluation"

      In the artcle it points out several things. Epimerox acts directly upon 2-epimerse and not unintended targets. Next it inhibits growth in Gram positive and not in gram negative. They feel that other therapies with a targetted 2-epimerse will also be developed.

      Originally Climb identified 30 compounds and 62 additional compounds were identified. In the lab mice were treated for 7 days, every 6 hours. The article mentioned the patent application. The only thing negative I read by a few message boards that look at this kind of news. The view was why they choose this publication to announce this, when there are other more prestiges places to publish it.

      Sentiment: Strong Buy

    • Wrote IR to see if astex still has the rights to this. Nothing in the 10-K I could find. It would be nice if astex still had the rights and only owed a small percentage to the University.

      Sentiment: Strong Buy

    • It seems to me this is important. Why has this not been distributed by the different news outlets. Maybe it is coming.

      Sentiment: Strong Buy

    • Great find!

    • Article continued:

      The search for new antibiotics is important because many bacteria are becoming resistant to the types of antibiotics that have been commonly used over the past seventy years. Finding a new antibiotic rests of finding new 'target sites' within the bacterial cell that a anti-microbial chemical can work against. With epimerox, it is possible that such a new site has been found.
      In finding this weakness in bacteria, at the level of cellular pathways, Vincent A. Fischetti, professor and head of the Laboratory of Bacterial Pathogenesis and Immunology (Rockefeller University) has spent seven years researching the mechanism of phage infection of bacteria.
      Essentially the target site for the antibiotic is an enzyme called 2-epimerase. This enzyme is designed to help a bacterium rebuild its cell wall. Focusing on this, epimerox was able to kill methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (or MRSA) with no evidence of resistance even after extensive testing.
      The findings have been published in the journal PLoS ONE.

      This could be huge. I have followed ASTX/SUPG for years and had never heard of this.
      I was eastcountybamboo, now I'm just me

 
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