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Pfizer, Second Genome Enter Obesity Research Pact

May 2, 2014

Will evaluate the microbiome in metabolic diseases

Second Genome has entered into an agreement with Pfizer to conduct microbiome research in a large observational study to gain new insights into obesity and metabolic disease. The study will evaluate numerous clinical factors and the microbiome in a select cohort of approximately 900 individuals with varying metabolic phenotypes.
Research suggests that microbiome is central to metabolic processes and changes in the composition of gut microbes appear to be linked to metabolic conditions such as obesity and type 2 diabetes. Recent microbiome transplant studies have demonstrated that specific microbes can influence host biology to drive weight loss or gain, suggesting the microbiome may be a therapeutic target for obesity.    
"We are thrilled to be working together with the scientists at Pfizer on this study," said Peter DiLaura, president and chief executive officer of Second Genome. "Our relationship with Pfizer on a study of this size and magnitude is needed to potentially shift our understanding of this runaway epidemic and find fresh approaches to treating metabolic disease."
"Understanding the complex set of interactions between the gut microbes in obese and non-obese individuals is critical to our research in metabolic disease, a key area of focus at Pfizer," said Barbara Sosnowski, vice president, External R&D Innovation at Pfizer. "Our relationship with Second Genome, a leading company in the rapidly growing microbiome field, may enable us to expand our knowledge in whole body metabolism, with a goal to better understand obesity."