The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and FORMA Therapeutics Enter a Drug Discovery Alliance to Discover and Develop Novel Therapies For Patients with Diffuse Large B Cell Lymphoma

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. & CAMBRIDGE, Mass.--()--The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) and FORMA Therapeutics, Inc., today announced they have begun a partnership to discover and develop small molecule compounds against a key lymphoma target, Bcl-6.

This new collaboration expands upon the partnership formed between LLS and FORMA in July 2009. Taking an active role in the identification of novel therapies for patients, LLS has committed substantial, multi-year funding to support this collaboration as part of its Therapy Acceleration Program (TAP). TAP is LLS’s bold initiative designed to advance therapies with high prospects of providing near-term benefit to patients suffering from blood cancers. By partnering directly with biotechnology companies, LLS is taking a results-oriented approach to more quickly identify potential breakthrough therapies and advance them along the FDA drug approval pathway.

B lymphocyte cells are an important component of the body’s immune system. B cells can become cancerous, leading to diseases such as non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Approximately 85 percent of non-Hodgkin’s lymphomas originate from B cells. Bcl-6 is a transcriptional repressor that down-regulates hundreds of genes important for control of function of normal and tumor cells. The project focuses on blocking Bcl-6 interaction with a protein co-repressor called SMRT. Inhibition of their binding provides an exciting new approach to treating lymphomas.

“With their oncology focus and unique drug discovery platform, FORMA has become an excellent partner for LLS. Together LLS and FORMA hope to change the standard of care and improve the quality of life for patients suffering from blood cancer,” said LLS CEO John Walter.

“FORMA is excited to be assisting LLS to achieve their mission to cure blood cancers. Our highly skilled team is dedicated to sharing our industry knowledge with LLS, leveraging our unique Computational Solvent (CS) Mapping technology to aid in structure-based drug design, screening and medicinal chemistry competence,” said FORMA CEO Steven Tregay, Ph.D.

About The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society ® (LLS) is the world’s largest voluntary health agency dedicated to blood cancer. The LLS mission: Cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families. LLS funds lifesaving blood cancer research around the world and provides free information and support services.

Founded in 1949 and headquartered in White Plains, NY, LLS has chapters throughout the United States and Canada. To learn more, visit www.LLS.org or contact the Information Resource Center at (800) 955-4572, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. ET. www.lls.org.

About FORMA Therapeutics

FORMA Therapeutics is integrating transformative chemistry and biology to unlock the best targets and pathways that genomic medicine has revealed. The Company is achieving this by applying its proprietary cell-based screening, structure-guided drug discovery and Diversity Oriented Synthesis (DOS) technologies, which FORMA also uses to discover novel compounds for its partners in indications beyond oncology. FORMA is a global company headquartered in Cambridge, MA with additional research operations in Connecticut and Singapore. www.formatherapeutics.com

Contacts

LLS:
Andrea Greif, 914-821-8958
andrea.greif@lls.org
or
FORMA:
Steven Tregay, CEO, 617-679-1970
or
FORMA Media Contact:
MacDougall Biomedical Communications
Douglas MacDougall or Jennifer Conrad, 781-235-3060

Release Summary

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and FORMA Therapeutics today announced they have begun a partnership to discover and develop small molecule compounds against lymphoma.

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Contacts

LLS:
Andrea Greif, 914-821-8958
andrea.greif@lls.org
or
FORMA:
Steven Tregay, CEO, 617-679-1970
or
FORMA Media Contact:
MacDougall Biomedical Communications
Douglas MacDougall or Jennifer Conrad, 781-235-3060