BioMed X, Merck Start New Joint Research Group

January 10, 2020
Pharmaceutical Technology Editors

BioMed X and Merck have extended their ongoing collaboration with the commencement of a new joint research group, bringing the total joint projects being undertaken at the BioMed X Innovation Center to six.

BioMed X and Merck have extended their ongoing collaboration with the commencement of a new joint research group, bringing the total joint projects being undertaken at the BioMed X Innovation Center to six.

In a Jan. 9, 2020 press release, it was announced that the latest project will focus on the role of the intestinal epithelial barrier in the development and exacerbation of autoimmune diseases, such as systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and multiple sclerosis (MS). The project group will be supported by Merck and will specifically explore the molecular mechanisms of the interactions between intestinal epithelial barrier and immune cells in autoimmune diseases.

Observations of interactions of the intestinal epithelial barrier with immune cells will be possible through studies involving the use of conventional and high-throughput metagenomics, generation of intestinal organoids from murine and human subjects, isolation of immune cells, and establishing a three dimensional in-vitro co-culture model. The ultimate goal for the project will be the identification of novel biomarkers and new therapeutic targets for the treatment of intestinal barrier loss to prevent the development and progression of autoimmune diseases.

“We are excited to further extend our collaboration with Merck,” said Christian Tidona, founder and managing director of BioMed X, in the press release. “This is our first joint research group with Merck beyond the field of oncology and we are looking forward to working with Merck’s Translational Innovation Platform Immunology in Billerica near Boston.”

Source: BioMed X