VexO Pharmaceuticals is a biotechnology company using its innovative technology to discover and advance novel small molecule drug candidates that affect well-validated disease pathways. VexO employs its patented Sentinel® Pathway Reporter System to initiate the discovery process. The Sentinel system can greatly increase the chances of a positive clinical outcome for a new drug candidate by correlating pathway-specific interference directly with disease modulation in living human cells. VexO has applied the highly predictive capabilities of its Sentinel system to build a pipeline of its own drug candidates in the area of ocular disorders.



VexO first introduces a reporter gene into regulated endogenous genetic sites in cells to monitor the regulatory pathway activity of interest in response to specific biological stimuli. Cells are first infected with a retrovirus carrying VexO’s proprietary reporter vector causing the vector to integrate randomly within the genome of each cell.

Then a positive/negative (+/-) selection technique is used to segregate and isolate cell lines with reporter genes specifically regulated by the biologic stimuli (e.g., growth factor binding) for the pathway of interest.

We employ the Sentinel Pathway Reporter System™ to initiate the drug discovery process. This system utilizes high throughput screening methods as a positive means to determine efficacy of compounds in specific regulatory pathways in intact, living cells. VexO's proprietary techniques offer the ability to tag endogenous disease-related genetic sites with a variety of activity read-out mechanisms. Engineered cell lines then provide a direct, binary read-out of drug activity at each regulated genetic site. VexO's Sentinel system may increase the chances of a positive clinical outcome for a new drug candidate by correlating pathway-specific interference

Once Sentinel Lines are developed for the pathway, the endogenous genetic sites that have been trapped are identified in each Sentinel clone. The genes identified are comprised of both known and novel genes within the pathway. The known genes confirm that the Sentinel Line that VexOproduces are reporting the activity of that specific pathway. In addition, the identification of these reporter genes can serve as validated biomarkers for that pathway. After the endogenous genetic sites have been identified, the Sentinel Line is further characterized by testing against an extensive panel of ligands for specificity.

Application of Sentinel Reporter System

The Sentinel Pathway Reporter System has number of product and research driven applications.
Product-Driven Applications:
- Initiation and Development of Drug Discovery Programs for Validated Disease Pathways
- Identifying Biomarkers for Clinical Trials
- Validation of Existing Drug Candidates for a Specific Disease Pathway
- Identification of New Indications for Existing Drug Candidates and Known Drugs

Research-Driven Applications:
- Deciphering Pathways and their Relationships
- Identifying Novel Genes