SOURCE: Ablynx

January 11, 2010 13:06 ET

Ablynx Successfully Generates Nanobodies® Against an Ion Channel and Announces New GPCR Programme

-- Successful generation of functional Nanobodies to an ion channel

-- In vivo proof-of-concept for GPCR targeting Nanobody in hematopoietic stem cell mobilization programme

GHENT, BELGIUM--(Marketwire - January 11, 2010) - Ablynx [Euronext Brussels: ABLX] announced today two significant advances achieved within its R&D portfolio. In the first, it has demonstrated the successful generation of functional Nanobodies against an ion channel. In the second, Ablynx has demonstrated in vivo proof-of-concept for a GPCR targeting stem cell mobilization programme. The target, CXCR4, is a validated chemokine receptor that plays an important role in cell movement, tumor growth and metastasis.

Nanobodies against an ion channel*

Ablynx has generated functional Nanobodies in the sub-nanomolar range, against an ion channel. The Nanobodies can block the ion channel function irrespective of whether it has been indirectly or directly activated. The ion channel drug class is technically very challenging and only a few functional research reagent monoclonal antibodies exist. Ion channels are highly relevant therapeutic targets especially in areas such as neuropathic pain, neurological disorders, inflammation and cardiovascular disorders.

In vivo proof-of-concept in CXCR4 stem cell mobilisation programme

Ablynx has successfully generated functional Nanobodies against the clinically validated chemokine receptor, CXCR4. Two types of Nanobody have been identified: highly potent antagonistic Nanobodies, as well as anti-CXCR4 Nanobodies with inverse agonist function. Ablynx has demonstrated in vivo proof-of-concept in a hematopoietic stem cell model. A single, intravenous administration of formatted anti-CXCR4 Nanobody resulted in rapid mobilization of stem cells in vivo. The antagonistic Nanobodies are now being further evaluated for their ability to mobilize hematopoietic stem cells in certain types of cancers.

Edwin Moses, CEO and Chairman of Ablynx, commented:

"Raising functional Nanobodies against two very challenging drug classes, ion channels and GPCRs, further demonstrates the strength and broad applicability of the Nanobody platform. These breakthroughs may open up important routes to innovative new therapies. I am also extremely pleased with the progress made in the last 12 months, with four Nanobodies now in clinical development, two of which are in Phase II. Our lead programme in thrombosis, ALX-0081, reached proof-of-concept by biomarker at the end of last year. We look forward to building on this success with primary endpoint data anticipated for both Phase II trials during 2010."

Complete version of the press release:

Contact Information

  • For more information, please contact:

    College Hill Life Sciences - for International media enquiries:
    Sue Charles, Justine Lamond
    t: +44 (0)20 7866 7857
    f: +44 (0)20 7866 7900
    e: Email Contact

    Dr Edwin Moses
    Chairman and CEO
    t: +32 (0)9 262 00 07
    m: +44 (0)7771 954 193 / +32 (0)473 39 50 68
    e: Email Contact