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Challenge AstraZeneca Challenge: Enhancing Therapeutic Delivery with Cell-Penetrating Peptides

AstraZeneca Challenge: Enhancing Therapeutic Delivery with Cell-Penetrating Peptides

Award: varies
Deadline: Closed
Active Solvers: 125
Posted: Jan 30 2018
Challenge ID: 9933934
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Cell-penetrating peptides are a special class of molecules that can cross the cell membrane in a receptor-independent manner without inducing toxicity. When coupled with a therapeutic agent, these peptides have the potential to significantly increase cellular uptake and to improve tissue targeted delivery. Preliminary studies indicate that incorporating these peptides into nucleic acid therapeutic molecules and delivery modalities have the ability to improve the efficacy of nucleic acid based therapies. AstraZeneca is seeking collaboration partners who can help us identify novel cell-penetrating peptides capable of overcoming the barriers associated with nucleic acid delivery.

This is an electronic Request-for-Partners (eRFP) Challenge; the Solver will only need to submit a written proposal to be evaluated by the Seeker with the goal of establishing a collaborative partnership.


Conjugating nucleic acid therapeutics or delivery vehicles with peptide targeting sequences may help to overcome tissue and cellular barriers to delivery, including endosomal escape, thus potentially increasing therapeutic efficacy, while minimizing systemic and off-target exposure. Clinical applications of cell-penetrating peptides have shown promise in a range of disease models. AstraZeneca is looking for a thought partner with whom to collaborate on the design of in vivo phage display screening studies for identifying potent cell-penetrating peptides. Successful proposals should focus on approaches that will enhance the tissue-specific delivery of antisense oligonucleotides, modified mRNAs, and/or the CRISPR/Cas system to target tissues such as pancreas, islets, kidneys, liver, and lung.

This is an electronic Request-for-Partners (eRFP) Challenge. The Solver will write a preliminary proposal (maximum of 10 pages, including supporting non-confidential information and contact details) to be evaluated by AstraZeneca with a goal of establishing a collaborative partnership. Upon completion of the evaluation, AstraZeneca may contact selected Solvers directly to work out terms for a collaboration contract. The monetary value of the contract will vary depending on the amount of work to be delivered and the agreed time frame.

[NOTE: Only proposals from Solvers who have the ability to work as a collaboration partner will be considered.]

Submissions to this Challenge must be received by 11:59 PM (US Eastern Time) on March 16, 2018. 

Late submissions will not be considered.



AstraZeneca is a global, science-led, biopharmaceutical company that focuses on the discovery, development and commercialization of prescription medicines, primarily for the treatment of diseases in three main therapy areas – Oncology, Cardiovascular & Metabolic Diseases and Respiratory.  AstraZeneca also is selectively active in the areas of autoimmunity, neuroscience and infection. As an innovation-driven research organization, AstraZeneca recognizes that great ideas come from many sources. Open innovation is an avenue by which ideas can be shared and AstraZeneca recently launched a pavilion to further its commitment to facilitate the advancement of pharmaceutical research.

What is InnoCentive?
InnoCentive is the global innovation marketplace where creative minds solve some of the world's most important problems for cash awards up to $1 million. Commercial, governmental and humanitarian organizations engage with InnoCentive to solve problems that can impact humankind in areas ranging from the environment to medical advancements.

What is an eRFP Challenge?

eRFPs allow Seekers to submit Requests for Proposals for a partner or supplier to provide materials or expertise to help solve a business challenge to the InnoCentive Solver community. This global community includes organizations and individuals, such as contract research organizations, scientists, university researchers, and technology companies.

After a Solver submits an eRFP response, the Seeker evaluates the responses to determine which Solver(s) to contact for further business discussions. With eRFPs, the Solver must not provide any confidential information in the eRFP response. If your eRFP response is selected, you negotiate the terms of the contract (including scope of work, tasks and duration) directly with the Seeker.

This Challenge type does not require Intellectual Property (IP) transfer. However, sometimes Challenges of this type do request that certain IP arrangements be made should a partnership be formed.

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