CAMBRIDGE, England & BOSTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Bicycle Therapeutics, a biotechnology company pioneering a new class of therapeutics based on its proprietary bicyclic peptide (Bicycle™) product platform, today announced it has been awarded a contract from the Department of Health and Social Care as part of the Small Business Research Initiative, or SBRI. SBRI Healthcare is an initiative to identify new ideas and technologies addressing future challenges to the U.K.’s National Health Service (NHS). Under the contract, Bicycle will identify Bicycle™ inhibitors to a range of Penicillin Binding Proteins (PBPs) from pathogens of significant medical concern and investigate their antimicrobial activity.
Bicycle’s research proposal was submitted in response to a competitive call for novel strategies targeting antimicrobial resistance in humans. Since 2009, Bicycle Therapeutics has addressed more than 90 drug targets with an 80 percent success rate, leading to two ongoing clinical programs, including its lead program BT1718 which is in Phase I/IIa for oncology. Under this new award, Bicycle will now adapt its ultra-high throughput proprietary phage screening platforms to screen targets to discover novel inhibitors of PBPs, key drug targets that catalyze bacterial cell wall biosynthesis. Bicycle will target the PBPs of key bacterial pathogens classified by the World Health Organization as either “critical” or “high” threats and which present a significant healthcare concern for U.K. hospitals. The work will be led by Dr. Mike Dawson, an industry veteran with more than 30 years of experience in infectious disease drug discovery and development.
“Bicycle’s unique and versatile technology is well-suited to creating a new class of antibacterial agents to address widespread antibiotic resistance, and we are honored to receive this funding from SBRI Healthcare,” said Kevin Lee, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer of Bicycle Therapeutics. “The Department of Health and Social Care’s recent announcement of a five-year plan to target antimicrobial resistance, along with its commitment to trial reimbursement mechanisms that are decoupled from antibiotic sales, marks a sea change in incentives for companies like ours with the technology to address antibiotic resistance. Patients worldwide will benefit from a more robust market for antimicrobials.”
About Bicycle Therapeutics
Bicycle Therapeutics is developing a unique class of chemically synthesized medicines based on its proprietary bicyclic peptide (Bicycle™) product platform to address therapeutic needs unreachable with existing treatment modalities. Bicycle’s internal focus is in oncology, where the company is developing targeted cytotoxics (Bicycle Toxin Conjugates™), targeted innate immune activators and T-cell modulators for cancers of high unmet medical need. Bicycles’ small size and highly selective targeting deliver rapid tumor penetration and retention while clearance rates and routes of elimination can be tuned to minimize exposure of healthy tissue and bystander toxicities. The company’s lead program, BT1718, is being evaluated in a Phase I/IIa trial in collaboration with Cancer Research UK. The company’s unique intellectual property is based on the work initiated at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge, U.K., by the scientific founders of the company, Sir Greg Winter, a winner of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his pioneering work in phage display of peptides and antibodies, and Professor Christian Heinis. Bicycle has its headquarters in Cambridge, U.K., with many key functions and members of its leadership team located in the biotech hub of Boston, Mass. For more information, visit www.bicycletherapeutics.com or follow us on Twitter at @Bicycle_tx.