Overall image of the NTDs Drug-discovery Research Consortium

Since 2012, Astellas has been engaged in the NTDs Drug-discovery Research Consortium based on open innovation. This drug-discovery research targets four diseases: leishmaniasis, Chagas disease, African trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness) which are in most need for effective new medicines among NTDs and dengue fever/dengue hemorrhagic fever which has high unmet medical needs. To tackle this challenge, we are working with the University of Tokyo, the Tokyo institute of Technology, the Nagasaki University, the High Energy Accelerator Research Organization, the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, and the international non-profit organization DNDi.

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Development of Drug Discovery Database for NTDs

Astellas, in collaboration with Tokyo Tech and University of Tokyo, has developed and published an integrated drug discovery database for NTDs named “iNTRODB”(Integrated Neglected TROpical disease DataBase). The iNTRODB includes information on all protein-coding genes in genomes of three trypanosome species which cause Leishmaniasis, Chagas' disease and African trypanosomiasis. It helps researchers to identify and choose promising drug target proteins by providing various information including protein structure, potential inhibitors, and experimental assay results. Every researcher can freely use this database, therefore, the iNTRODB can accelerate drug discovery research for NTDs in the world.

iNTRODB is highly regarded as an example of how close cooperation among Japanese research institutes and international NPOs can contribute to solving problems on a global scale, and it received the Minister of Health, Labor and Welfare Award of the 11th annual Merit Awards for Industry-Academia-Government Collaboration in August 2013.

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News releases related to this initiative