October 06, 2011 08:00 ET

Chemical Diversity Research Institute at ChemRar Hi-Tech Centre Signs Collaboration and License Option Agreement With Novartis Institute for Tropical Diseases to Battle Tuberculosis

MOSCOW--(Marketwire - Oct 6, 2011) - The Chemical Diversity Research Institute (CDRI) at the ChemRar Hi-Tech Centre announced that it has signed collaboration and license option agreement with the Singapore based Novartis Institute for Tropical Diseases (NITD) to undertake discovery and development of patentable chemical compounds to find new, faster cures for Tuberculosis.

Tuberculosis (TB) is a major health problem in the world today, responsible for nearly 2 million deaths per year. One third of the world's population are infected with latent TB, and ~5-10% of infected individuals may develop active TB within their lifetime. Current treatment of TB takes more than half a year, much longer than treatment for other infectious diseases. Emergence of multi drug resistant tuberculosis and TB co-infection with HIV are escalating the need for finding new drugs for curing the TB.

CDRI has prepared and delivered to NITD a focused library consisting of thousands of compounds that will be screened in a cell-based assay to identify lead molecules that are active against the mycobacterium.

Under the agreement ChemRar has the right to market such drugs through its affiliate Silvius Pharma in Russia and other countries in the region, whereas Novartis has the right to market them in Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa and other countries.

Nikolay Savchuk, Chairman of the Board of CDRI, noted: "We are honored to commit our research platforms and significant experience in novel anti-infective drug discovery to such a noble cause. We are delighted to participate in an innovative Public Private Partnership, endorsed by the governments of Singapore and Russia, to work on their national priorities to aid the world in the battle against Tuberculosis. Our chemical expertise combined with Novartis commitment to discovering and developing medicines for diseases of the developing world creates unique synergy that will help patients around the globe."

The collaboration was initiated with a Memorandum signed in September 2010, during a visit of a Russian government delegation to Singapore. It is endorsed and supported by Novartis, and is expected to be supported in Russia by the Ministry of Industry and Trade, and the Ministry of Health and Social development.

About Chemical Diversity Research Institute:

Chemical Diversity Research Institute (CDR) is a fully integrated discovery and development Contract Research Organization (CRO), subsidiary of ChemDiv, Inc of San Diego CA, established at ChemRar High Tech Center in Khimki Moscow with subsidiaries in Russia and Ukraine, business and logistics operations around the world. CDRI collaborates with pharmaceutical and biotech partners by enabling them to accelerate R&D programs to higher value clinical inflection points. One of the industry's most established CROs, ChemDiv offers Integrated Discovery outsource solutions that cover a complete range of disciplines needed to bring a new project in CNS, oncology, inflammation, metabolic, infectious and other diseases from identification of a biological target (protein expression, assay development etc.) to clinical drug candidates (ADME/DMPK, toxicity and safety studies, efficacy models etc.) to Proof of Concept drug candidate (Phase I and II) and to the market. With successful 20 years business record in life sciences and over 500 research associates, we put forward unique translational capabilities from Research to Clinical Development.

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