UCB and Baylor College of Medicine launch strategic alliance in neurodegeneration

UCBUCB and Baylor College of Medicine announced that they have started a strategic research alliance, led at Baylor by Professor Huda Zoghbi, that aims to discover new therapeutics to treat neurodegenerative disease.

This research alliance reflects UCB’s strategy to accelerate discovery and development of transformational therapeutics by forging strong partnerships with leading academic partners. Huda Zoghbi is professor in the Departments of Pediatrics, Molecular and Human Genetics, Neurology and Neuroscience at Baylor College of Medicine, investigator at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and the director of the Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute (NRI) at Texas Children's Hospital.

The research programme is aligned with a key strategy of UCB NewMedicines to focus on the discovery of medicines targeting pathways with a high level of genetic and human validation. Professor Zoghbi and her collaborators have world leading capabilities in using functional genetics in model organisms to identify therapeutic points of intervention for new medicines.

Ismail Kola, Executive Vice President, UCB & President, New Medicines, UCB said: "We cannot accelerate discovery of transformational medicines and create value for patients if we work alone. That is why we have been creating super networks with high quality scientific partners, combining insights from patients with deep understanding of disease mechanisms. This strategic research alliance brings together Huda Zoghbi's world class research with our high quality R&D teams to discover medicines based on genetically validated targets that could transform the lives of people living with severe neurodegenerative disease."

"My team and I are very excited to start this collaboration with UCB as their expertise will complement ours and will ensure that therapeutic targets are swiftly used to discover new medicines for patients suffering from devastating neurodegenerative diseases," Prof. Zoghbi said.

Dr. Paul Klotman, president and CEO of Baylor College of Medicine, said, "These types of collaborations will ensure accelerated results. Dr. Zoghbi is world renowned in neurodegenerative disease research and I’m confident this alliance will lead to improved clinical outcomes."

About UCB UCB, Brussels, Belgium is a global biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of innovative medicines and solutions to transform the lives of people living with severe diseases of the immune system or of the central nervous system. With more than 8500 people in approximately 40 countries, the company generated revenue of € 3.3 billion in 2014. UCB is listed on Euronext Brussels (symbol: UCB).

About Baylor College of Medicine
Baylor College of Medicine in Houston is recognized as a premier academic health sciences center and is known for excellence in education, research and patient care. It is the only private medical school in the greater southwest and is ranked 21st among medical schools for research and 11th for primary care by U.S. News & World Report. Baylor is listed 20th among all U.S. medical schools for National Institutes of Health funding and number one in Texas. Located in the Texas Medical Center, Baylor has affiliations with seven teaching hospitals and jointly owns and operates CHI St. Luke's Health, Baylor St. Luke's Medical Center. Currently, Baylor trains more than 3,000 medical, graduate, nurse anesthesia, physician assistant and orthotics students, as well as residents and post-doctoral fellows.

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