Hi, my name is Bruce Rogers, and I am the Chief Scientific Officer of Morphic Therapeutic (MT).
I left a job I loved at Pfizer after nearly 20 years in big pharma to join MT. What sealed the deal for me was a napkin sketch that our founder, Tim Springer, drew for me over coffee.
Since his initial discovery of the first members of the integrin family in the 1980s Tim has spent over 30 years working on integrins. These receptors have become important drug targets, resulting in a number of important drugs that help patients live better lives, including Tysabri, Entyvio and Integrilin. See: OUR TECHNOLOGY Despite the target’s blockbuster commercial success, broadly developing small molecule drugs against it was much more challenging than expected. Initial excitement waned as countless molecules failed in the clinic and in some cases, even worsened outcomes. As a result, Pharma companies scrapped their integrin programs. But not Tim.
After more than another decade of work, Tim’s lab and a post-doc named Albert Lin cracked the puzzle by identifying the molecular mode of action that leads to partial agonist responses that resulted in the negative clinical outcomes, rather than their intended antagonism. See: OUR FOUNDER Once they figured out the initial chemistry required to control the conformations of the receptor – the napkin sketch – Tim, along with Polaris Partners, launched Morphic Therapeutic. Morphic Therapeutic is poised to create a new generation of integrin small molecule drugs. The result is a state-of-the-art small molecule discovery platform poised to succeed in this historically challenging class of receptors.
We are leveraging unique and proprietary insights from Tim Springer’s Boston Children’s Hospital lab into the structure and biology of the integrin family of cell adhesion receptors. Founded in 2015 with venture capital funding (from Polaris Partners, Tim Springer, Schrodinger and ChemPartner), Morphic Therapeutic is leveraging its platform to discover drugs for inflammation, fibrosis, vascular diseases and cancer. Schrodinger is the world’s leading provider of computational chemistry software and services to the life science industry and has partnered with MT to streamline the design of superior integrin targeting therapeutics. The combination of MT’s deep integrin structural expertise with Schrodinger’s suite of in silico technologies enables a rapid course to novel and effective drugs for both orphan and blockbuster indications.