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Rigel Receives Patent for Mammalian Two-Hybrid Technology
South San Francisco, CA - September 25, 2000
Rigel Pharmaceuticals, Inc. today announced the issuance of Patent No. 6,114, 111, entitled, “Mammalian Protein Interaction Cloning System,” directed to the use of compositions, particularly vector systems, that can be used to evaluate protein-protein interactions in mammalian systems. Rigel will use the patented technology to help isolate and characterize potential new drug targets discovered using the company’s combinatorial biology technology.
Protein-protein interactions are involved in a wide variety of important biological reactions, such as enzyme activity and antibody reactions, which, if not properly executed, can cause aberrant cellular function that can lead to disease. Researchers use two-hybrid technology to identify and isolate proteins that are involved in important disease states and signaling pathways, and then use these proteins to discover new drugs. Previously, scientists were limited to studying protein-protein interactions in model systems of lower organisms, such as yeast. Our patented technology improves upon and supplements existing two-hybrid technologies in that it now enables researchers to study protein-protein interactions in the highly-relevant environment of a mammalian cell.
“The ability to evaluate new protein drug targets in mammalian cells offers a number of advantages in drug discovery and serves as an important addition to research conducted in yeast and other model systems, which alone do not always translate well into human biology,” said Donald G. Payan, M.D., co-inventor on the patent and co-founder and chief scientific officer of Rigel. “The patented technology is highly-flexible, as it can be used in any number of mammalian cells, such as human breast cancer cells or T-cells, is highly stable, and is designed to reduce the background signals found in other systems that can taint the accuracy of results. We have used it successfully to characterize a number of interesting drug targets, some of which are now in preclinical testing.”
Ying Luo, Ph.D., Senior Director, Genomics & Target Discovery and Betty Huang, Manager, Intracellular Pathway Mapping, both of Rigel Pharmaceuticals, are also co-inventors on this patent.
Based in South San Francisco, California, Rigel is a privately-held post-genomics combinatorial biology company focused on discovering a portfolio of novel small molecule drugs based on the Company’s rapid drug target identification and validation technology. Rigel has nine product development programs in immunology and cancer and has entered into collaboration agreements with Cell Genesys; Janssen Pharmaceutica, a Johnson & Johnson company; Novartis and Pfizer.