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Codexis Licenses New Drug Metabolite Profiling and Lead Diversification Technology From the California Institute of Technology

Potential Earlier Identification of Toxicity, Efficacy for Pharmaceutical


REDWOOD CITY, Calif., Aug. 29 /PRNewswire/ -- Codexis, Inc., a private biotechnology company and leading developer of clean manufacturing processes, today announced it has licensed important intellectual property from the California Institute of Technology for preparing and identifying drug metabolites (substances produced during drug metabolism). Codexis will incorporate this technology in development of new R&D productivity tools for use by the pharmaceutical industry.

This technology is based on development of a family of diverse variants of bacterial cytochrome P450 enzymes by Frances Arnold, Ph.D., Dick and Barbara Dickinson Professor of Chemical Engineering and Biochemistry, Cal Tech. Dr. Arnold will join the Codexis Industrial Advisory Board.

"This enzyme family can facilitate identification of safer, more efficacious drugs earlier in the drug development process by expediting the production of potential human metabolites of drug candidates," said Peter Seufer-Wasserthal, Ph.D., Vice President and General Manager, Codexis Pharma Services Group. "Additionally, this technology can be used for lead diversification and complements the human cytochrome biocatalyst products and services at BioCatalytics, acquired by Codexis in July."

"Current metabolite identification and synthesis methods are based on classical chemistry methods, which can be slow and cumbersome," he added. "Combining Codexis' leading position as a developer of biocatalytic products and processes for the pharmaceutical industry with the techniques developed by Dr. Arnold will enable us to provide a powerful, efficient new tool set for rapid identification and synthesis of drug metabolites. These new tools could add considerable value in metabolite profiling as well as lead diversification in drug discovery."

Drug metabolites are produced by the body during the break-down (metabolism) of drugs. Primary metabolites are largely formed in the liver by human P450 enzymes to aid in elimination of a drug from the body. In some cases, metabolites can be toxic, while for other drugs, "active" metabolites have shown improved efficacy and lower toxicity than the administered drug substance. The US Food and Drug Administration now recommends metabolic characterization for all new investigational human therapeutics.

Codexis, Inc. is a leading developer of clean biocatalytic process technologies that can substantially reduce the cost of manufacturing across a broad range of industries. Codexis' proprietary directed evolution technologies enable novel solutions for efficient, cost-effective and environmentally friendly processes for pharmaceutical, energy and industrial chemical applications. In 2006, the company was recognized by the U.S. EPA with a Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award. Codexis is a registered trademark of Codexis, Inc. For more information please visit

Contact: Justin Jackson, of Burns McClellan, 212-213-0006, or Lyn Christenson, Codexis,, 650-298-5368.

SOURCE Codexis, Inc.
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