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Druggable Small Molecule Inhibitor of MEIS Proteins

Project description

Development of small molecule inhibitors of MEIS proteins

The MEIS1 (myeloid ecotropic viral insertion site 1) gene was identified at one of the viral integration sites in myeloid leukaemic cells and has been associated with oncogenic transformation. Its product, MEIS1 protein, acts as a co-factor of homeodomain-containing transcription factors that are involved in the control of numerous processes during embryonic development. Latest research has demonstrated that MEIS proteins are associated with decreased cardiac regeneration, decreased stem cell proliferation and cancer progression. The EU-funded MEISi project supports efforts of the biotech start-up Meinox to develop small drug inhibitors of MEIS protein as a potential critical factor in the treatment of myocardial injuries, bone failure and cancer. Currently, Meinox aims to conduct a feasibility study and risk analysis and to develop a robust commercialisation plan.


MEISi is the first innovative product of Meinox as a druggable substance, owing to its years of research on MEIS biology (published in prestigious journals like Nature and Cell Stem Cell, and PCT patented - pending national entry in 44 countries). Meinox targets the deadliest noncommunicable diseases (NCDs); cancer, CVDs and diabetes, together accounting for nearly 71% of all deaths globally. Never ending efforts and global targets in tackling these diseases show the importance of the development of more effective therapeutics.

MEISi is a druggable target-based small molecule, developed and validated by Meinox. MEISi inhibits the activity of MEIS protein which plays a critical role in cell metabolism and associated with NCDs. The benefit it presents to the targeted drug discovery market is to provide tools to modulate molecular mechanisms of the NCDs. The massive sizes of oncology and cardiovascular drug markets (USD $ 29.3B globally) indicate the significance of the small molecule drug discovery market which motivates Meinox to target €10M market share in 3 years after commercialization.

Meinox is a deep-tech startup established in 2018 with the main focus on novel and high-level pharmaceutically active ingredients. The company aims to research, develop, produce and market first-in-class, selective drug-like small molecule inhibitors of MEIS, PBX and TGIF2 proteins and their co-factor HOXA9.

Meinox aims to conduct a feasibility study with a risk analysis based on different market regulations. In order to improve the commercialization plan, potential customers of MEISi will be identified and strategies will be developed for each segment by defining proper channels for the MEISi product family. Market entry strategy will be validated by performing market analysis and competitive benchmarking in the target markets.

Call for proposal


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Net EU contribution
€ 50 000,00
Resitpasa mah. katar cad. teknokent ari 1 no: 2/5 ickapi no: 19
34467 Sariyer istanbul

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The organization defined itself as SME (small and medium-sized enterprise) at the time the Grant Agreement was signed.

İstanbul İstanbul İstanbul
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Other funding
€ 21 429,00