science (rigerimod): for the treatment of lupus

about our company

ImmuPharma (LSE:IMM) is a pharmaceutical company focusing on developing novel medicines in specialist markets with serious unmet need.
ImmuPharma has a number of drugs in development, each representing a significant breakthrough in its field. The company’s most advanced drug candidate, Lupuzor™, has started phase III after receiving the approval from the US FDA to enter phase III with a Special Protocol Assessment and “Fast Track” designation.

ImmuPharma plc is led by a commercially focused Board and management team with extensive experience and is headquartered in London and has its research operations in France (ImmuPharma (France) SA) and Switzerland (ImmuPharma AG).

ImmuPharma has an important collaboration arrangement with the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS), the French National Council for Scientific Research. Lupuzor™ was successfully licensed to the large US specialist pharmaceutical company Cephalon Inc. in 2009. Due to the takeover of Cephalon by Teva Pharmaceuticals Inc in 2011, ImmuPharma regained all rights to Lupuzor™.

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our pipeline

  • Lupuzor™ for the treatment of Lupus
  • IPP-204106 for the treatment of multiple cancers plus molecules of the same chemical family for other indications
  • IPP-102199 for the treatment of moderate to severe pain
  • IPP-203101 for the treatment of MRSA and other severe infections
  • IPP-201007 for the treatment of inflammatory diseases
  • Library of over 300,000 small molecules and peptides (foldamers)
  • Peptide Delivery Technology
  • Novel projects in collaboration with the CNRS

our scientific leadership team

Dr Robert Zimmer, MD, PhD
President and Chief Science Officer, ImmuPharma plc

Dr. Robert Zimmer was the founder of both ImmuPharma Switzerland and ImmuPharma France. He began his career in Roche’s headquarters in Basle as coordinator of clinical pharmacology and international clinical leader. He subsequently joined Jago Pharma, the drug delivery company, and became a director and head of research and development at SkyePharma plc after it acquired Jago. He was instrumental in developing a number of products for  Roche, GlaxoSmithKline, Abbott, Searle, Sanofi-Aventis and Lilly.  He obtained his MD at Strasbourg Medical School and his PHD at the University of Aix-Marseille.
Prof Sylviane Muller, PhD
Research Director at CNRS and Co-founder of ImmuPharma France

Dr Muller, the key inventor of Lupuzor, is a Distinguished class Research Director at the CNRS (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique) and head of the “Immunologie et chimie thérapeutiques” unit,  Her field of expertise covers autoimmunity, immuno-peptides and synthetic vaccines. She has made 23 patented discoveries and was also a founder of Neosystem, now Polypeptide, a leading peptide development and manufacturing company. She obtained her PhD at the University of Strasbourg and spent two years in Max-Planck Institute for Immunobiology in Freiburg, Germany. Sylviane Muller received the CNRS Innovation Medal 2015, a prestigious award recognizing individuals whose outstanding research leads to breakthrough innovations in terms of technological, medical and commercial applications.
Dr Jean-Paul Briand, PhD
Research Director at CNRS and Co-founder of ImmuPharma France

Dr Briand is CNRS Research Director at the “Immunologie et chimie thérapeutiques” unit of the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, the largest scientific research institution in France. He is co-inventor of Lupuzor and Nucant molecules (ImmuPharma’s anticancer programme). He has extensive industry experience in peptide chemistry and synthesis in Peninsula, USA and was also a founder of Neosystem, now Polypeptide, a leading peptide development and manufacturing company.
Dr Gilles Guichard, PhD
Research Director, CNRS and Co-founder of ImmuPharma France

Gilles Guichard is a CNRS Research Director. His current research focuses on peptidomimetic and foldamer chemistry. He studied chemistry at the École Nationale Supérieure de Chimie in Toulouse and at the University of Montpellier in France. He received his PhD from the University of Strasbourg. After post-doctoral research with Prof. Dieter Seebach at the ETH Zürich (Switzerland) working in the field of β-peptide foldamers, he joined the Institut de Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire in Strasbourg, He moved to the Institut Européen de Chimie et Biologie (IECB) in Bordeaux, France as a new group leader.
The aim of the Strasbourg CNRS team headed by Prof. Sylviane Muller is to understand the molecular and cellular bases of autoimmune response and starting for information obtained from these studies, to identify novel therapeutic approaches to specifically treat systemic autoimmune diseases. The key theme of the research Unit is Lupus. The laboratory comprises 60 researchers, engineers, technicians, postdoctoral fellows, PhD and Master students, almost all involved in investigation centered to Lupus. Over years researchers and staff have gained a long-lasting and strong experience and know-how in this area. They have access to a number of advanced technologies and also to spontaneous or induced mouse models on which it is possible to investigate genetic, cellular and molecular processes involved in the disease as well as therapeutic approaches without interference with concomitant medication. Besides the development of new drugs designed for treating patients with Lupus, the centres of interest of team leaders of the Unit are to better understand the influence of genetic and environmental factors in the etiology of Lupus, the reasons for the immune breakdown of tolerance that leads to the disease, the possible link between cutaneous tissues and the immune system and how they may interact to regulate the balance between immunity and tolerance, and many other aspects of the cellular and molecular dysfunction of the immune system in animal and patients affected by Lupus. The laboratory is an active partner of several European and French Lupus networks, and several of its members are regularly invited to present their latest data in international workshops and congresses. The force of the Laboratory is to associate fundamental scientists and active clinicians as well as experts in different technological areas (biologists, chemists, pharmacologists, physicians) who all focus their efforts on Lupus condition. The laboratory coordinates several major programs on Lupus, and is heading the European Lupus cohort project associating several German and French Centres, the Laboratory of Excellence Medalis (centre of drug discovery focused on inflammatory diseases and cancer) and the reference center for rare autoimmune diseases.

Prof Muller's academic page Prof Muller's Innovation Medal IBMC Strasbourg Team CNRS Immunology Department