Press Release

X-Rx and Mercachem Provide Update on Two Discovery-Stage Oncology Programs


New York, NY, USA, and Nijmegen, The Netherlands, October 26, 2016X-Rx, Inc, a biotechnology company focused on the creation of small molecule drug candidates, and Mercachem BV, a leading chemistry CRO with expertise in medicinal and process chemistry, today reported progress with two discovery-stage oncology programs from the portfolio of X-Rx. The programs target Mcl1, an anti-apoptotic target that is over-expressed in many liquid and solid tumor types, and TAK1, a member of the mitogen-activated protein kinase family.

Under the service agreement with X-Rx, Mercachem is responsible for hit-to-lead and lead optimization campaigns targeting Mcl1 and TAK1. Mcl1-targeting agents could lead to inducing tumor cell death via apoptosis and via modulation of the tumor micro-environment, drive sensitivity to chemotherapy and other immunotherapy approaches. Blocking TAK1, a kinase that when over-expressed in many cell types can drive tumor onset and progression, fibrosis and autoimmune diseases, will have numerous clinical applications.

“In 2015, we successfully partnered two of our therapeutic programs with leading pharma organizations in major markets. We are committed to building on this initial success and bringing additional candidates towards a stage where significant value has been generated to partner them on favorable terms,” said Dr. Lee Babiss, CEO of X-Rx. “With today’s news we are taking the next step in the discovery and development of our Mcl1 and TAK1 programs together with Mercachem.”

“We are pleased that X-Rx has chosen Mercachem as their collaboration partner as they further explore the therapeutic potential of their two promising oncology targets using our competence and expertise with kinases and PPI targets,” commented Dr. Gerhard Müller, SVP Medicinal Chemistry of Mercachem.