Euroscreen receives funding for de-orphanizing GPCRs having potential roles in Multiple Sclerosis

Euroscreen today announced funding support from the National Multiple Sclerosis Society through Fast Forward, and EMD Serono, Inc, a subsidiary of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany.

The award of funds will help support the identification of endogenous ligands for up to five orphan G-Protein Coupled Receptors (GPCRs) which may play pathogenic or protective roles in Multiple Sclerosis (MS).

“We are delighted to gain this substantial funding as well as to be able to work with the National MS Society and their collaborative partner, EMD Serono,” said Dr. Jean Combalbert, Euroscreen’s CEO.

The award from the National MS Society and EMD Serono is one of the first given in the Accelerating Commercial Development Fund from a funding program designed to accelerate the development of research discoveries into new or improved therapies for people with MS.

“The promise of current research like that undertaken by Euroscreen SA to change the MS landscape is exciting, and it fuels the collaboration between the National MS Society and EMD Serono in advancing science in key areas of focus to speed the development of new therapies and innovations to benefit people living with MS,” said Dr. Timothy Coetzee, Chief Advocacy, Services and Research Officer at the National MS Society.

About Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis, an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system, interrupts the flow of information within the brain, and between the brain and body.

About the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and Fast Forward, LLC 

The Society mobilizes people and resources to drive research for a cure and to address the challenges of everyone affected by MS. To fulfill this mission, the Society funds cutting-edge research, drives change through advocacy, facilitates professional education, collaborates with MS organizations around the world, and provides programs and services designed to help people with MS and their families move their lives forward. In 2013 alone, through its home office and 50-state network of chapters, the Society invested $48.3 million to support 380 new and ongoing research projects around the world. The Society is dedicated to achieving a world free of MS. Join the movement at

Fast Forward, LLC was established by the National Multiple Sclerosis Society as part of a comprehensive approach to MS research and treatment, focusing on accelerating commercial development of promising research discoveries. Through Fast Forward, the Society connects university-based MS research with private-sector drug development and funds small biotechnology/pharmaceutical companies to develop innovative new MS therapies and repurpose FDA-approved drugs as new treatments for MS. For more information, please visit the Society’s website.

About EMD Serono, Inc.

EMD Serono, Inc., a subsidiary of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, is a specialized biopharmaceutical company dedicated to developing therapies with groundbreaking potential. The company has strong market positions in neurology, endocrinology and in reproductive health. In addition, EMD Serono has an enduring commitment to solve the unsolvable, with state-of-the-art science dedicated to developing new therapies in our core focus areas of neurology, oncology, immuno-oncology and immunology. With a long-standing history of industry expertise and a dedication to shape the future of healthcare, the company’s US footprint continues to grow, with approximately 1,000 employees around the country and fully integrated commercial, clinical and research operations in the company’s home state of Massachusetts.

For more information, please visit

About Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany 

Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, is a global pharmaceutical, chemical and life science company with total revenues of € 11.2 billion in 2012, a history that began in 1668, and a future shaped by approx. 38,000 employees in 66 countries. Its success is characterized by innovations from entrepreneurial employees. Merck KGaA’s operating activities come under the umbrella of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, in which the Merck family holds an approximately 70% interest and shareholders own the remaining approximately 30%. In 1917 the U.S. subsidiary Merck & Co. was expropriated and has been an independent company ever since.

Worldwide there are two separate companies that bear the name “Merck”, the original Merck KGaA from Darmstadt, Germany, the oldest pharmaceutical and chemical company in the world, and the pharmaceutical company Merck & Co. in the United States. The rights to the name and trademark MERCK in North America (USA and Canada) lie with Merck & Co., the former U.S. subsidiary of Merck, whereas Merck KGaA operates in North America under the umbrella brand EMD. In the rest of the world, Merck KGaA owns the rights to the Merck name and trademark. This press release was distributed by Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany.

About Euroscreen S.A.

Euroscreen is a Belgium-based, private, Drug Discovery and Development company providing first-in-class small molecule drug candidates for therapeutic areas including hormonal disorders, inflammation and neurodegenerative diseases. Euroscreen has a drug discovery track-record with multiple innovative and proprietary small-molecules targeting GPCRs. Euroscreen is advancing its orally-available and highly specific lead program ESN364 into clinical trials for the treatment of hormonal disorders. Euroscreen is also actively seeking partners for other pharmaceutical candidates, such as its ESN282 program for the treatment of inflammatory diseases such as Ulcerative Colitis. Euroscreen is backed by leading investors, including Vesalius Biocapital, SRIW and Fortis Private Equity. Further information about Euroscreen and its drug discovery and development programs can be found online at