Three New Partnerships in Regeneration

1. JDRF Announces Diabetes Research Collaboration with Pfizer and Israeli Scientists

JDRF has begun a research collaboration with Pfizer, Hadassah Medical Organization, and The Hebrew University of Jerusalem to develop drugs that can regenerate insulin-producing cells in people with type 1 diabetes. The program, co-funded by JDRF and Pfizer, is under the direction of Benjamin Glaser (Hadassah Medical) and Yuval Dor (Hebrew University) in collaboration with scientists from Pfizer PharmaTherapeutics Research & Development. The research will focus on evaluating proprietary Pfizer compounds as candidates to promote beta cell regeneration. The collaboration builds on unique beta cell regeneration models created by Dr. Dor and funded by JDRF. With this new project, the researchers will use drugs supplied by Pfizer to boost beta cell mass in healthy and diabetic mice. Drugs that can stimulate beta cell replication and expand beta cell mass have the potential to help cure diabetes by restoring the body’s ability to produce insulin. (March 2010)

2. JDRF Joins GNF to Form Innovative Diabetes Drug Discovery Platform

JDRF has entered into a collaborative agreement with the Genomics Institute of the Novartis Research Foundation (GNF) to create a drug discovery and development platform. The four-year program, focused on regeneration, is one of the largest and most comprehensive collaborations in JDRF’s 40-year history. It marks a major opportunity to work with an experienced and highly regarded scientific partner to quickly translate discoveries in research into new treatments for people with type 1 diabetes. The JDRF-GNF partnership should jump-start the creation of a multi-product pipeline for beta cell regeneration. (August 2009)

3. JDRF Joins Johnson & Johnson to Create a Novel Drug “Incubator” Program

JDRF will work with the Johnson & Johnson Corporate Office of Science and Technology to speed the development of drug targets and pathways that promote beta cell survival and function. The program will fund research at academic and medical research centers worldwide. By creating this “incubator” program to support early-stage studies—with a company known for first-class research and significant experience in the commercialization of products—JDRF is looking to increase the number of viable drug targets identified and fundamentally advance the pace of diabetes research. (December 2009)