Enterprise Europe Network

New drug target treating open and closed wounds as well as chronic pain and itch

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Partner keyword: 
Medical Technology / Biomedical Engineering
Pharmaceutical Products / Drugs
Enzyme Technology
Pharmaceuticals/fine chemicals
Other research and experimental development on natural sciences and engineering


A German university offers a technology that embodies potent and new selective MRGPRX4 (mas-related G protein-coupled receptor X) receptor agonists and antagonists. Applications include pain treatment and treatment of inflammatory conditions, such as neuropathic or chronic pain, itch, skin diseases, immune diseases, and cancer. The university offers a license agreement as well as technical cooperation agreements to partners from the pharmaceutical industry..



G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) are the largest group of membrane receptor proteins and represent the most successful targets of drug therapy. The MRGPRX (mas-related G protein-coupled receptor X) subfamily is only expressed in primates including humans and belongs to the group of orphan receptors, for which the cognate agonists are unknown.

A German university develeoped a technology based on potent and selective MRGPRX4 receptor agonists and antagonists, that may especially be used for treating pain and inflammatory conditions.

The human MRGPRX4 receptor represents a fundamentally new drug target, and the development of potent MRGPRX4 receptor agonists, partial agonists, and antagonists / inverse agonists to be used for the treatment of MRGPRX4-associated conditions, disorders or diseases requires the design of novel drugs. Relating thereto, the development of potent and selective MRGPRX4 receptor antagonists is a basic need for the design of drugs for alleviating, preventing and/or treating conditions, diseases and disorders connected to MRGPRX4 function, particularly for, but not limited to the use for treating open or closed wounds, e.g. for wound healing, and for the treatment of different types of pain and itch, skin diseases, immune diseases, and cancer.

The university offers its innovation to pharmaceutical industry under license agreement. If further know how is needed for drug optimization, a technical cooperation might also be suitable with a view to testing and laboratory tasks..

Advantages & innovations

Cooperation plus value: 
The target (= receptor) has not yet been described for the indication mentioned and the chemical substances which have been identified primarily as agonists are also new.

Stage of development

Cooperation stage dev stage: 
Under development/lab tested

Partner sought

Cooperation area: 
The university offers its technology to the pharma industry under licensce agreement. Drug optimization must take place, i.e. the best possible effective molecule with the fewest or, at best, no side effects must be identified. Since the receptor is only known in humans, no suitable animal models are available. The partner would therefore first have to carry out in vitro tests with human cells and then clinical studies with volunteers. The latter can usually only be done by a pharmaceutical company. For all steps that are possible in the laboratory, the university offers support in the form of a technical cooperation agreement.


Model of a MRGPRX4 receptor