Artizan Biosciences & Biohaven Therapeutics Announce Therapeutic Development Program in Parkinson’s Disease

Artizan Biosciences, Inc. and Biohaven Therapeutics Ltd. recently announced the companies are initiating a therapeutic discovery and development program in Parkinson’s disease (PD), to exploit recent scientific advances in the understanding of pathogenic roles played by the gut microbiome in PD. This follows the companies’ first collaboration announced in March 2021 centered on Artizan-discovered product candidates for the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

The PD research program will initially focus on sample collection, animal model and research capabilities development, and identification of microorganisms (pathobionts) that can promote alpha-synuclein pathology, which is the hallmark of PD, and the onset and progression of disease symptoms. The collaboration will subseqently concentrate on discovery and development of novel small molecule therapeutics designed to block the harmful effects of these pathobionts.

Bridget Martell, MD, Artizan’s President and CEO, said “We are excited to expand our collaboration with Biohaven to address Parkinson’s disease, a neurodegenerative disease with high unmet need that may benefit from our innovative and validated approach to develop small molecule therapeutics that target the microbiome. An increasingly compelling body of evidence suggests the gut-brain axis plays a pivotal role in the development of PD, offering the opportunity to pursue this novel treatment strategy.”

Artizan will leverage its experience creating IBD-BIOME, the company’s flagship biobanking program in IBD, which collected clinical data from over 1,500 proprietary longitudinal patient samples. IBD-BIOME aided the identification of pathobionts through its proprietary drug discovery platform utlilizing IgA-SEQ technology that allowed the company to progress three clinical drug programs intended for the treatment of IBD. Artizan will similarly develop a “PD-BIOME” biobanking program, supporting the screening of patient samples and subsequent identification of new pathobionts and potential therapies for PD.

Irfan Qureshi, MD, Vice President of Neurology at Biohaven, commented “We look forward to broadening our partnership with Artizan and enhancing our early stage pipeline. The microbiome is at the nexus of immunity, inflammation, metabolism, and brain-systemic communication, which are all deregulated in Parkinson’s disease. Artizan’s highly differentiated IgA-SEQ technology and proven microbiome-targeted small molecule platform, combined with Biohaven’s deep expertise in neurological diseases, provides a unique opportunity to develop cutting-edge therapeutics for PD.”

Artizan Biosciences, Inc. is a biotechnology company at the frontier of microbiome precision medicine, targeting and blocking microbial-driven dysregulation and inflammation in the gut that is at the root cause of many serious diseases. The company’s proprietary drug discovery engine identifies and characterizes microbial drivers of disease within precise patient subsets in high-value areas including gastrointestinal, metabolic, autoimmune, and neurodegenerative diseases. Using a novel small molecule approach, Artizan modulates intestinal imbalance by inhibiting specific, disease-associated microbial virulence factors in the intestinal tract. The company’s platform with its lead program nearing the clinic in inflammatory bowel disease is validated by strategic partnerships with Biohaven Pharmaceuticals, Brii Biosciences, and Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation. Founded with IgA-SEQ™ technology and preeminent immunobiology expertise from Yale University, Artizan is based in New Haven, CT. For more information, visit

Biohaven is a commercial-stage biopharmaceutical company with a portfolio of innovative, best-in-class therapies to improve the lives of patients with debilitating neurological and neuropsychiatric diseases, including rare disorders. Biohaven’s neuroinnovation portfolio includes FDA-approved NURTEC ODT (rimegepant) for the acute and preventive treatment of migraine and a broad pipeline of late-stage product candidates across three distinct mechanistic platforms: CGRP receptor antagonism for the acute and preventive treatment of migraine; glutamate modulation for obsessive-compulsive disorder, Alzheimer’s disease, and spinocerebellar ataxia; and MPO inhibition for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Fr more information, visit