Research collaborations

Research collaborations that advance global health issues are crucial to our work – especially for providing access to alternative perspectives, different areas of expertise, and emerging technology and concepts. We join forces with pharmaceutical companies, hospitals, research hubs and universities to further our ability to serve the needs of healthcare professionals and patients. Here are some examples.

Licence agreement for a new biotherapy in atopic dermatitis

We have entered into a license agreement with Chugai for nemolizumab, a new biotherapy treatment mechanism for moderate-to-severe atopic dermatitis. The license is for development and marketing worldwide, with the exception of Japan and Taiwan. We were excited by the Phase IIa study results published in NEJM earlier this year. We hope this trial will confirm nemolizumab’s effectiveness and safety and pave the way for confirmatory Phase III trials, to make nemolizumab a first-in-class solution for atopic dermatitis.

Atopic dermatitis collaboration with leading U.S. academic institutions

We have signed a long-term joint research agreement on atopic dermatitis with Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York City, and Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago. The agreement aims to enhance scientific understanding of the underlying mechanisms behind atopic dermatitis, to improve the quality of life for patients.

We still do not know why the disease persists in some patients but clears before adulthood in others, and researchers will collaborate to shed more light on its development and course. Our research grant represents one of the largest financial contributions made by a single biopharmaceutical company in recent years for pure academic research in dermatology.

Genetics in acne with St John’s Institute of Dermatology, King’s College London

Family and twin studies suggest genetics play a substantial role in susceptibility to acne, but efforts to characterize this genetic basis have so far been limited. St John’s used a national UK network of dermatologists to recruit subjects with severe acne and perform a case-control genome-wide association study, leading to the discovery of three new genome-wide significant association signals for acne. This opens up new avenues for treatment in the future. Once specific genetic loci have been confirmed, functional data from Zeta White will then be used to interpret the biological meaning of the observed genetic associations. It is expected, that the genetic (St John’s) and functional (Zeta White) data sets will be complementary and allow meaningful overall conclusions.