Oxford Drug Design

A distinctive approach

Oxford Drug Design, a spinout from the University of Oxford, is an innovative biotechnology company discovering and developing novel therapeutics supported by advanced computational methods.

We are discovering new drugs with differentiated modes of action against challenging diseases with high unmet medical need. Based on a core competence platform in tRNA synthetase enzymes and AI methods, our pipeline expansion is focused on oncology.

Our differentiated drug discovery platform has been validated by the rapid discovery of novel anti-infectives with highly innovative chemical scaffolds and modes of action against urgent pathogens.


Dual core competences

The strong drug design and development expertise of Oxford Drug Design results from a distinctive combination of our two core competences:

I. Comprehensive capabilities in Aminoacyl-tRNA (aaRS) synthetases

II. Pioneering computational and machine learning methods

Each is distinctive in its own right, yet the seamless in-house integration of the two complementary strengths produces an even deeper and more differentiated capability.

I. Core expertise in Aminoacyl-tRNA Synthetases

From the extensive work in our most advanced program in novel anti-infectives, Oxford Drug Design has established a core strength in aaRS inhibition. This comprises:

  • In-depth knowledge of aaRS structural biology, including proprietary X-ray crystallographic data

  • Library of designed, novel, patent protected, chemotypes showing potent inhibitory activity

  • Comprehensive in-vitro and in-vivo characterization

  • Computational models (see below) focused specifically on aaRS

  • Efficient network of chemistry and biology CRO’s with aaRS expertise

This expertise enables efficient expansion into other major disease areas where aaRS enzymes also play key roles. Our current focus is against cancer.

More details are presented in our Pipeline section.

II. Core competence in pioneering computational discovery platform

The seminal Oxford University work in computational chemistry of Prof. Graham Richards FRS, CBE – the company Chairman – was the basis from which Oxford Drug Design was originally created.

This in-house capability has been further enhanced over the course of 20 years during which Oxford Drug Design has developed it into an effective suite of tools to accelerate our drug discovery and development success. It consists of a dual approach:

  • Novel featurization methods for multi-dimensional molecular structure and property descriptors, complemented with cutting edge topological methods

  • Proprietary machine-learning models using pattern recognition, neural networks and multi-parameter optimization

More details are presented in our Technology section.

The powerful, seamless, combination of our two core competences lead us to develop innovative therapeutics with novel modes of action and chemotypes against challenging disease pathways.

It guides us to better decisions and increased probability of success in addressing unmet medical needs.