Pharma Focus Europe

Biohaven Advances Development of the MoDE Platform Technology Licensed From Yale University

Wednesday, October 26, 2022

Biohaven Ltd. has made significant progress in the development of its MoDE extracellular target degrader platform technology, licensed from Yale University, for the treatment of various diseases, including neurological disorders, cancer, infectious diseases, and autoimmune diseases.

In 2021, Biohaven obtained a worldwide exclusive license agreement to develop and commercialize the MoDE platform based on groundbreaking research conducted by Professor David Spiegel's laboratory at Yale University. This license agreement grants Biohaven exclusive global rights to Yale's intellectual property related to the MoDE technology. The technology focuses on the clearance of disease-causing proteins and biomolecules by utilizing multi-functional molecules to target them for lysosomal degradation.

Professor Spiegel explained that MoDEs are a class of bifunctional synthetic molecules designed to mediate the degradation of extracellular proteins by binding to the asialoglycoprotein receptor (ASGPR) expressed primarily on hepatocytes. The MoDE platform differs from existing approaches, such as Proteolysis Targeting Chimeras (PROTAC), as it does not rely on ubiquitin ligases and allows for the degradation of a wide range of targets.

Professor Spiegel's research demonstrated the modularity of the MoDE technology by synthesizing bifunctional molecules capable of degrading both antibody and pro-inflammatory cytokine proteins. The results provided the first experimental evidence that synthetic molecules could be used for targeted protein degradation of extracellular proteins in vitro and in vivo.

The MoDE platform developed at Yale University is described in a peer-reviewed publication titled "Bifunctional Small Molecules that Mediate the Degradation of Extracellular Proteins" and various Yale University patent applications. The platform has been referred to by others as "ASGPR Targeting Chimeras" (ATACs) or "Lysosome-Targeting Chimeras" (LyTACs). Yale and Biohaven are actively expanding the intellectual property portfolio related to the platform through additional patent applications.

Since entering into the license agreement with Yale, Biohaven and Yale have filed multiple patent applications worldwide to disclose and claim various aspects of the MoDE platform, its multifunctional degraders, and methods of use.

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