Gero and Pfizer combine forces to discover potential targets for fibrotic disease

Longevity biotech and Big Pharma multinational enter an innovative research collaboration that uses large-scale human-based data.

Gero today announced that it has entered into a research collaboration with Pfizer to apply Gero’s machine learning technology platform to discover potential therapeutic targets for fibrotic diseases using large-scale human-based data.

As part of this research collaboration, the companies will leverage Pfizer’s expertise and Gero’s technology platform with the aim to identify genes and pathways linked to fibrotic diseases. Pfizer may advance the potential therapeutic targets and would be responsible for further preclinical and clinical development.

Longevity.Technology: Fibrotic diseases are characterised by the excessive accumulation of extracellular matrix (ECM) components, such as collagen. This can lead to tissue fibrosis and scarring, and the scarring, in turn, can lead to functional impairment and organ failure which results in a reduced quality of life and increased mortality. Fibrotic diseases can affect various organs, including the liver, kidney, lung and heart, and are often chronic and progressive in nature.

Several factors have been identified as contributing to the development and progression of fibrotic diseases, including inflammation, oxidative stress and abnormal ECM remodeling. Current treatment options for fibrotic diseases are largely limited to symptom management and do not address the underlying pathogenic mechanisms driving fibrosis. The significant unmet need of fibrotic disease warrants a much better understanding of the molecular and cellular basis of fibrosis, as well as the development of targeted therapies to halt or reverse the fibrotic process. By harnessing the power of AI to examine human data, Gero is well placed to move the needle on fibrosis research.

“Human data-driven drug discovery avoids the ‘preclinical trap’ and has the potential to identify clinically relevant targets against human (not rodent) diseases. However, genetics-based target identification against age-related diseases is hindered by the irreversible component of human aging,” said Peter Fedichev, CEO of Gero.

Peter Fedichev, CEO, and Co-founder at Gero

“Our technology platform allows us to separate irreversible effects of aging from reversible disease phenotypes to potentially identify the most actionable therapeutic targets.”

Gero will receive an upfront payment and is eligible to receive discovery milestone payments if the project progresses.

“We are excited to work with Pfizer, one of the world’s leading biopharmaceutical companies, to potentially identify targets against fibrotic diseases, which have a large unmet need,” said Alex Kadet, CBO of Gero.

“We believe that combining our platform technology with Pfizer’s extensive disease expertise has the potential to identify high-value targets in this disease area.”

READ MORE: New AI-enabled study from Gero unravels the principles of aging