Galapagos receives €2.5m grant for IBD research

IWT-funded project aims to identify new compounds for future treatment of IBD

Belgian biotechnology firm Galapagos has been awarded a €2.5m grant from the Flemish agency for Innovation by Science and Technology (IWT) for inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) research and development.

The goal of this two-and-a-half year project is to identify new therapeutic compounds for future treatment of IBD patients.

The IWT-funded programme aims to gain better insight into the roles of GPR43 and two undisclosed targets in the pathobiology of chronic inflammatory disorders.

Galapagos will collaborate in this project with Professor Dr Paul Rutgeerts and Professor Dr Séverine Vermeire from the Catholic University of Leuven, and the research group of Professor Dr Martine De Vos at Ghent University.

The first compound to be tested in IBD patients will be GLPG0974, an inhibitor of target GPR43 (also known as FFA2). This target is one of three that will be investigated in the project. Galapagos has recently completed a second Phase I clinical study with GLPG0974, and results should be reported later this quarter.

‘After rheumatoid arthritis, IBD is the second autoimmune disease focus for Galapagos. With this grant we will get a better understanding of the cause of IBD, and this will contribute to the search for better medicines,’ said Piet Wigerinck, CSO of Galapagos.

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