Emerald BioStructures, a contract research organization and SomaLogic, a diagnostics and biomarker discovery company, have entered into a strategic collaboration for the structure-based design of chemically modified DNA aptamers (SOMAmers) and small molecule therapeutics, based on crystal structures of important protein targets bound to high affinity SOMAmers.
Emerald’s X-ray crystallography expertise will be leveraged with SomaLogic’s SOMAmer technology under the current multi-target, multi-year research collaboration.
The characterised SOMAmers are used in diagnostics and pharmaceutical research and development, due to their exquisite affinity for protein drug targets.
SomaLogic CEO Larry Gold said that the structure allowed them to see for the first time several structural themes that can be achieved with SOMAmer technology, which explains the high affinity and properties of their chemically modified DNA aptamers for their protein targets.
“Our ongoing relationship with Emerald gives us the advantage of structural insight to design improved SOMAmers for both diagnostic and drug discovery applications,” Gold said.
Emerald BioStructures CEO Lance Stewart said that Emerald has a track record of investing in technology developments that help unlock structural insights into allosteric mechanisms in high value protein targets.
“SomaLogic’s powerful aptamer reagents are having a great impact in the field of biomarker discovery and diagnostics and they are confident that the elucidation of SOMAmers bound to their protein targets will enable structure-guided design of novel small molecule modulators of protein structure,” Stewart said.