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News | 28 February 2020

Healx announces first three Rare Treatment Accelerator partnerships

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Healx selects initial three patient group partners following successful first call for global Rare Treatment Accelerator programme. The programme received tremendous patient group response with over 80 patient groups registering interest. Further announcements detailing these partnerships will be coming soon.

Cambridge, UK – 28 February 2020 – Healx, the AI-powered and patient-inspired technology company specialising in finding new treatments for rare diseases, today announced that three patient groups – representing different disease areas – have been selected to progress to the next stage of their Rare Treatment Accelerator programme. 

These groups will each receive up to the value of $1 million in AI and drug discovery resources as they work together with Healx to predict and progress new treatments for their rare diseases of interest. This sum of $1 million per project comes from the total $20 million that Healx has committed towards their global partnering programme in order to scale up to 20 collaborations in the next 24 months.

The programme is designed so that patient groups and the rare disease patients they represent may benefit both from Healx’s ability to move treatments from prediction stage to clinical trial-readiness phase in as little as 24 months.

The first call for applications to the Rare Treatment Accelerator saw an extremely high volume of interest and quality of applications received. Following the meticulous review of applications by Healx’s selection panel, an initial three patient groups and their diseases were prioritised. These patient group applications clearly demonstrated, amongst a number of other important factors, the components that Healx requires in order for their AI-powered drug prediction technology and drug discovery teams to move forward in the data gathering and drug prediction stages of the project.

These selected patient groups have been notified and Healx looks forward to being able to release more details of these partnerships and project progress in the coming months.

Commenting on the success of the first call, Dr Karine Proulx, Drug Discovery Alliance Manager (Patient Group Partnerships) at Healx said:“We were blown away by the positive response from patient groups around the world for the RTA launch. We received close to 40 applications from many different disease areas – with a further 40 indicating that they intend to apply in future. The incredibly positive feedback received on the campaign makes us even more excited about the next RTA call.”

Dr Bruce Bloom, Chief Collaboration Officer at Healx said: “The purpose of the RTA programme is to enhance our ability to drive new and affordable therapies to patients as quickly as possible. Working closely with patient groups we plan to move from prediction completion to clinical readiness in 24 months or less – something we have achieved several times before, with patient groups like FRAXA Research Foundation and Pitt Hopkins Research Foundation.

 

In addition to these initial three selected groups, the Healx team are working closely with a further eight patient groups, who have most – but not quite all – of the necessary components, in order to determine if and when the remaining elements, such as data needed to power Healx’s AI algorithms and preclinical models to validate therapeutic predictions, might be available.

For patient groups whose applications indicate that more work is necessary, Healx’s team will be in touch shortly to offer the information and resources needed to help support these groups to identify and address areas for additional development before they can apply again.

Healx are currently focused on moving the current cohort of disease projects forward as quickly as possible and are getting ready to support the next round of Rare Treatment Accelerator applications. Patient groups interested in applying for the next call of the Rare Treatment Accelerator are invited to register their interest online: https://healx.io/rare-treatment-accelerator-registration/

Many of the initial applicants provided feedback on the RTA process and Healx are keen to hear as much feedback as possible from other applicants on all aspects of the Rare Treatment Accelerator process. Please send your comments to the team at accelerate@healx.io