(23th Sep 2009) MerLion Pharmaceuticals Pte Ltd Announces Antibacterial Screening Agreement with the Experimental Therapeutics Centre of Singapore.

MerLion Pharmaceuticals Pte Ltd (MerLion) today announced a one year agreement to provide high throughput screening and chemistry services to the Agency for Science, Technology and Research’s (A*STAR) Experimental Therapeutics Centre (ETC), Singapore.

Under the agreement, ETC will provide new antisense based assay technology for MerLion to screen its diverse natural product sample collection and apply its chemistry expertise to the isolation of new antibacterial lead compounds. ETC will undertake pre-clinical development of the discoveries.

“The alarming spread of drug resistant bacteria emphasises the need for new antibiotics with novel mechanisms of action. The Experimental Therapeutics Centre has identified a novel target for antibacterial therapy and this offers a unique opportunity to discover new antibiotics from MerLion’s extensive natural products collection.” Said Dr Tony Buss, CEO of MerLion. “We are very pleased to be working with ETC and to strengthen our existing relationships with A*STAR research institutes in Singapore.”
Said Dr Alex Matter, CEO of ETC, “Early stage drug discovery and development is a key focus for ETC. This synergistic partnership with MerLion allows us to tackle the challenging task of drug discovery and also demonstrates the rich collaborative links between the public and private sectors in Singapore. The resulting efforts from this partnership will add value to the whole drug discovery value chain and take it a step closer to the clinic.”


MerLion Pharmaceuticals Pte Ltd

MerLion Pharmaceuticals Pte Ltd is a privately-held company headquartered in Singapore. MerLion offers contract research services in multiple business areas, including the pharmaceutical, personal healthcare, agroscience, industrial biotechnology, functional foods, flavourings and cosmetics sectors. The company provides access to one of the world’s largest and most diverse natural product collections by offering sample/extract supply services, extract profiling and standardisation, assay development, high throughput screening, compound purification and structure identification, biocatalyst isolation and strain improvement.


Experimental Therapeutics Centre

The Experimental Therapeutics Centre (ETC) was established in March 2007. Its core mission is mining the gap between the areas of basic and applied biomedical research. They have 3 goals:

• Maximizing the potential for new discoveries and technologies for human health
• Mentoring young scientists for successful careers in the biomedical industry
• Managing projects to populate a successful product pipeline

ETC has setup up the following technology platforms in the areas of mass spectrometry, proteomics, antibody development, protein engineering, bioassays development, preclinical pharmacology and high throughput screening to strengthen Singapore’s capability in pre-clinical drug development.


Tony Buss PhD.
MerLion Pharmaceuticals Pte Ltd
(+65 6829 5600)