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The UCB-Harvard Research Alliance Expands and Moves Forward
Date:6/18/2012

BRUSSELS, June 18, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- UCB announced today that it has launched a second collaborative research project with Harvard that builds upon the innovative Research Alliance signed between UCB and Harvard in 2011. The second research project comprises a collaboration with the laboratory of Junying Yuan, Ph.D., Professor of Cell Biology at Harvard Medical School, aimed at driving translation and developing small molecule compounds for induction of autophagy, with potential applications in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.

Autophagy is best described as a mechanism the cell uses to auto-digest intracellular components. It is an evolutionarily conserved catabolic process, mediating the turnover of malfunctioning, aged or damaged proteins and organelles within cells. Autophagy is seen as an important regulator of many critical biological processes. Professor Junying Yuan has been at the forefront of molecular research for over two decades and has received numerous honors and awards in recognition of her work.

The research alliance between Harvard and UCB reflects UCB's open innovation model that aims to generate new knowledge and capitalize on external scientific advances, resources and expertise through dedicated collaborations that complement the company's unique internal capabilities and expertise.

"Harvard's academic excellence is an ideal fit with UCB's expertise in discovery research. Both Harvard and UCB share the same drive for scientific excellence and innovation to benefit patients and meet unmet health care needs," said Ismail Kola, President of UCB New Medicines, UCB's research and early development division. "We are delighted with our ongoing translational research collaboration with Harvard and are looking forward to further interactions with Harvard's world-class research enterprise in areas of mutual interest." 

"We couldn't be more pleased about entering into this, our second innovativ
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