Sanford-Burnham Collaborates With Pfizer to Identify Targets for Treatment of Insulin Resistance and Diabetes

Sanford-Burnham Collaborates With Pfizer to Identify Targets for Treatment of 
Insulin Resistance and Diabetes 
Collaboration Utilizes Sanford-Burnham Drug Discovery Platform to
Find New Therapeutic Targets for Treating Complications of Obesity
and Diabetes 
ORLANDO, FL   -- (Marketwired) -- 08/13/13 --  Sanford-Burnham
Medical Research Institute (Sanford-Burnham) announced that it has
entered into a collaboration with Pfizer Inc. to identify new
therapeutic targets for preventing and treating complications of
obesity and diabetes. The team will utilize novel screening tools
including systems-biology approaches and technologies developed at
Sanford-Burnham with the aim of discovering new therapeutic
strategies for reducing insulin resistance in obesity and diabetes. 
Under the three-year agreement, multi-disciplinary teams from
Sanford-Burnham and Pfizer will collaborate to identify and validate
new targets for drug discovery. The collaboration combines
Sanford-Burnham's expertise in fundamental disease biology and muscle
metabolism with Pfizer's expertise in drug discovery. Investigators
will utilize Sanford-Burnham's Conrad Prebys Center for Chemical
Genomics (Prebys Center) to screen for new relevant targets using
investigational compounds from Pfizer as well as evaluate compounds
previously identified from the NIH chemical library. Once the
screening identifies compounds of interest, Sanford-Burnham and
Pfizer scientists will collaborate to characterize and further study
the "hit" compounds to understand their mechanism of action. These
compounds will then be used as "probes" to identify novel therapeutic
targets for the treatment of diabetes. 
"Diabetes presents an enormous public health burden. There is an
acute need to translate innovative science into potential new
medicines for people living with this debilitating disease," said Tim
Rolph, Vice President and Head of Cardiovascular and Metabolic
Diseases Research Unit at Pfizer. "Pfizer's collaboration with
Sanford-Burnham to use their cutting-edge screen designs is an
example of our strategy to work with academic innovators to discover
novel therapeutics for prevention and treatment of diabetes." 
Pfizer will have access to Sanford-Burnham's team of world-class
scientists and translational infrastru
cture dedicated to finding new
approaches to targeting disease. Collaborating with researchers at a
major pharmaceutical company will help Sanford-Burnham achieve its
mission of translating high-impact science into new therapies. "This
important collaboration focuses our tremendous scientific and
translational firepower on a major medical problem -- complications
of obesity-related diabetes. Working with Pfizer, we can more quickly
bridge the gap between basic and translational research," said
Stephen Gardell, Ph.D., senior director of scientific resources at
Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute at Lake Nona. 
The Prebys Center houses Sanford-Burnham's state-of-the-art screening
facility established to accelerate the rate of commercialization of
basic research in an independent medical research setting.
Sanford-Burnham's drug discovery capabilities include: ultra-high
throughput screening, high-content screening, phenotypic screening,
and target deconvolution technologies. The Prebys Center is led and
staffed by industry-trained professionals who work closely with
Sanford-Burnham investigators and industry collaborators to translate
scientific findings into actionable drug discovery projects. 
About Insulin Resistance in Diabetes 
It is well known that abnormalities of lipid metabolism in muscle are
associated with insulin resistance in obese individuals where excess
fat is deposited in many organs and tissues in the body including
skeletal muscle. As fat accumulates, muscle - the major
sugar-disposal site in the body - becomes insulin resistant and sugar
is not cleared as effectively from the blood. 
About Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute 
Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute is dedicated to
discovering the fundamental molecular causes of disease and devising
the innovative therapies of tomorrow. Sanford-Burnham takes a
collaborative approach to medical research with major programs in
cancer, neurodegeneration, diabetes, and infectious, inflammatory,
and childhood diseases. The Institute is recognized for its National
Cancer Institute-designated Cancer Center and expertise in drug
discovery technologies. Sanford-Burnham is a nonprofit, independent
institute that employs 1,200 scientists and staff in San Diego (La
Jolla), California, and Orlando (Lake Nona), Florida. For more
information, visit us at www.sanfordburnham.org. 
The following files are available for download: 


 
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Deborah Robison
(407) 615-0072
drobison@sanfordburnham.org