July 21st, 2022
Kallyope, a leading biotechnology company focused on identifying and developing therapeutics targeting the gut-brain axis, and Brightseed, creators of Forager®, a pioneering artificial intelligence platform that illuminates the connections between nature and human health, have entered a strategic research collaboration to screen plant compounds to identify and validate active agents that can be further derived into potential therapeutics targeting weight loss management and glucose control.
Brightseed’s Forager® is building the world’s largest library of small molecule bioactive compounds mapped to human biological targets. The research collaboration will leverage Brightseed’s novel insights on bioactives and the Kallyope Klarity™ platform, comprising the world’s broadest set of integrated end-to-end capabilities to further unlock gut and brain biology and the gut-brain axis. Should early-stage research result in the identification of any lead compounds candidates, Kallyope has rights to derivatize and develop therapeutics in humans while Kallyope and Brightseed will share rights to consumer applications of identified compounds.
“This collaboration brings together two leading, diverse technological platforms and teams for the discovery of novel consumer products that may have therapeutic benefits for type 2 diabetes and obesity,” said Jay Galeota, president and CEO, Kallyope. “We are excited to have the opportunity to work with Brightseed, whose capabilities are highly synergistic with our lead metabolism therapeutics program and deep drug discovery and development expertise. This partnership is also consistent with our strategy to leverage our platform via collaborations in non-core areas that broaden our impact on public health.”
Kallyope and Brightseed scientists will initially collaborate to leverage validated biology for the discovery of lead plant-derived compounds that may modulate body weight and glucose control. The teams will then iterate on the lead and determine optimal plant sources of compounds using their sophisticated computational platform.
“Seventy-five percent of our current healthcare spending in the U.S. goes towards treating chronic health conditions that severely impair the quality of life of millions of people. We need to reimagine more scalable approaches to combat the scourge of diet-induced chronic conditions,” said Jim Flatt, co-founder and CEO, Brightseed. “Kallyope is one of the visionary pharmaceutical companies that recognize the need to develop health products that can prevent or reduce the risk of certain chronic diseases. Historically, nature has provided the majority of small molecules that are used to inform our medicines. In partnership with Kallyope’s high value gut-brain axis biological targets and technology platform, we will discover the next generation of natural bioactives to improve health and reduce the incidence of diet-related chronic disease.”
Bioactives are small molecule compounds produced by plants, fungi, and microbes that grow in and adapt to environments that present a wide range of challenges to their survival. Bioactives also benefit the health of humans – they are the enlivening caffeine in tea, the powerful antioxidant lycopene in tomatoes, and they inform active ingredients in medicines like Taxol, Aspirin and Metformin, a first-line treatment for Type 2 diabetes, derived from the French lilac flower. Science has long known that bioactives are critical to human health, yet the vast majority remain unknown and uncharted. Brightseed’s A.I., Forager®, discovers bioactives in nature and maps them to human health outcomes at a rate and accuracy that was previously impossible.