Vedanta Enters Collaboration with Johnson & Johnson Innovation Center in Boston
Boston, MA, June 27th, 2013 – Vedanta announced today that Johnson & Johnson Development Corporation has made an investment in Vedanta as part of a collaboration with the Johnson & Johnson Innovation center in Boston to support the advancement of a novel class of therapies that modulate pathways of interaction between the human microbiome and the human immune system.
Vedanta’s programs are based on fundamental discoveries in the field of mucosal immunology. The discoveries illuminate mechanisms the immune system uses to differentiate between “good” and “bad” microbes. When these mechanisms are impaired, autoimmune and inflammatory diseases result.
“We believe mining these mechanisms holds the key to developing a whole new class of immunotherapies that will act in ways distinct from existing drug classes”, said Ruslan Medzhitov, professor of Immunobiology at Yale and cofounder and Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board of Vedanta, “The potential impact on human health is enormous, and we are just beginning to tap into that opportunity”.
Vedanta has developed a discovery platform to mine these unexplored mechanisms. The platform enables investigation of novel targets and discovery of immunomodulatory microbiome-derived compositions. Vedanta’s lead program, VE-202, is a novel therapy for the treatment of IBD and other autoimmune and inflammatory diseases.
“Critically, in a field that is now frequently generating headlines on the basis of exciting basic research findings, Vedanta has moved beyond the initial discoveries and identified specific therapeutic compositions that we have advanced in preclinical work”, said John LaMattina, former president of Pfizer Global R&D and member of the Board of Directors of Vedanta.
Vedanta owns a broad portfolio of foundational intellectual property that places the company in a strong position to develop a robust pipeline of therapies based on how the human immune system interacts with its microbial residents.
“We are looking forward to working with the Johnson & Johnson Innovation center in Boston and the Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies to accelerate our research. The Immunology Therapeutic Area within Janssen shares a genuine interest in the human microbiome field,” said Bernat Olle, Chief Operating Officer of Vedanta.
Vedanta was formed by PureTech and a group of world renowned experts in immunology and microbiology. Vedanta is developing a novel class of therapies that modulate pathways of interaction between the human microbiome and the host immune system. Vedanta’s scientific co-founders include Dr. Ruslan Medzhitov (Professor of Immunobiology at Yale and also Chairman of the Scientific Advisory Board of Vedanta), Dr. Alexander Rudensky (tri-institutional Professor at the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Institute, the Rockefeller University, and Cornell University), Dr. Dan Littman (Professor of Molecular Immunology at NYU), Dr. Brett Finlay (Professor at the University of British Columbia), and Dr. Kenya Honda (Team Leader at Laboratory for Gut Homeostasis, RIKEN Center for Integrated Medical Sciences).
PureTech www.puretechventures.com is a healthcare product innovation company specializing in developing products that will significantly impact human health and well-being. PureTech’s pipeline of 15 products includes more than 10 programs at or beyond the stage of human clinical testing.
Chief Operating Officer