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Weizmann Institute of Science

Country: Israel
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469 Projects, page 1 of 94
  • Funder: EC Project Code: 338720
    Partners: Weizmann Institute of Science
  • Open Access mandate for Publications
    Funder: EC Project Code: 899224
    Funder Contribution: 150,000 EUR
    Partners: Weizmann Institute of Science

    Coronary Heart Disease (CHD) and particularly Myocardial Infarction (MI), i.e. heart attack, is the leading cause of death in the Western world today. The main cause for CHD is the incapacity of the mammalian heart to undergo regeneration after injury. Current therapies are not able to address the central problem of decreased pumping capacity that results from the depleted pool of cardiac muscle cells. The outcome of this shortcoming is grim; nearly half of all patients with heart failure die within five years of the initial diagnosis. We have tested a widely used FDA approved drug, Copaxone, which is used to treat Multiple Sclerosis, for its efficacy in heart repair and made a breakthrough discovery. Copaxone improved cardiac function and reduced scarring in a mouse MI model. Most of the treated mice (85%) responded to the treatment, exhibiting an average improvement of 44% in heart function parameters, along with 40% reduction in scar size. In this PoC, we will expand these experiments by testing Copaxone using a chronic heart failure (CHF) model in both small and large animals (rats, pigs), and determine the optimal dosage regimen. Based on positive findings in this PoC, we plan to pursue Phase II clinical trials. The suggested activities include the preparation of the commercialization by interacting with key opinion leaders (e.g. cardiologists), who are in the position to speed up the clinical translation. We will also interact with pharma companies to build a potential collaborator and customer network. Eventually, we aim at commercializing repurposing existing drug to treat heart diseases, for CHF or acute MI indications. The impact of such therapy would be vast: CHD is the most common cause of death in Europe, accounting for 1.8 million deaths each year. As the original drug was already successfully commercialized by our institute, we can build on this experience and have the treatment available in approximately 5-6 years.

  • Open Access mandate for Publications and Research data
    Funder: EC Project Code: 101100758
    Funder Contribution: 150,000 EUR
    Partners: Weizmann Institute of Science

    The Covid-19 pandemic emphasized the urgent need for efficient broad-spectrum antiviral drugs against potential future coronaviruses (CoV) strains that may cause the next COVID pandemic. A critical stage during infection is the fusion of the viral envelope with the host-cell membrane, which depends on the conserved S2 domain of the viral Spike (S) protein. Hence, targeting the S2 domain is a promising approach to achieving pan-CoV inhibition. Since MERS- and SARS- S proteins bind to different cellsurface receptors through the rapidly diversifying S1 domain, we reasoned that compounds that inhibit both must target the S2 domain. We developed and performed a robust fluorescence-based high-throughput screen of 173,227 unique compounds and classified them based on their ability to inhibit infection of pseudoviruses bearing either MERS or SARS-2 S proteins at single-cell resolution. To our knowledge, this is the largest screen performed to date. This analysis identified several potent broad-spectrum small molecules that inhibit S protein mediated infection at sub-micromolar concentrations. Moreover, the compounds we discovered obey Lipinski's rule of five, indicating that they can potentially become drugs to prevent viral transmission. This project aims to develop two of the most promising broad-spectrum CoV small molecule inhibitors to create more clinically ready compounds with up to 100% inhibition activity that could be administered orally to reduce hospitalizations, prevent chronic effects, and reduce mortality. The technical work in the project is focused on lead optimization leading towards broad-spectrum antiviral drugs against future outbreaks of bat-borne viruses. The project also comprises pre-commercialization activities, where IP protection and commercialization planning are the core activities. Eventually, we will expect our developed compound(s) to boost the market for antiviral therapies for bat-borne viruses.

  • Open Access mandate for Publications
    Funder: EC Project Code: 812577
    Overall Budget: 150,000 EURFunder Contribution: 150,000 EUR
    Partners: Weizmann Institute of Science

    Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most widespread joint disease, affecting millions and imposing a huge individual and socio-economic burden. The creation of liposomes functionalised with novel (IP-protected) molecules that greatly extend (by almost an order of magnitude) their half-life in joints following IA injection, relative to existing approaches, and the alleviation of OA that may arise through exploiting this longer retention, is the basis of this proof of concept project. The main innovation step is functionalizing liposomes with our novel molecules to provide much longer retention drug-delivery vehicles, which therefore provide greater benefits in therapy relative to existing approaches, and so should be preferred by patients. Its practical implementation, to advance and investigate the potential for long-retention IA drug-delivery and other uses, will be carried out both through validation on animals (proof-of-concept), through suitable pre-commercialisation studies, networking and identifying potential partners, and developing a business plan. Hence, we propose to validate the concept of creating new products that will be available commercially for IA delivery, implementing the long-retention in the joints which greatly enhances their usefulness and which is the basis of the present innovation step.

  • Funder: EC Project Code: 335439
    Partners: Weizmann Institute of Science