Immutep (ASX:IMM) has announced that the Australian Research Council (ARC) has awarded it and research partner Monash University a $671,427 grant under the ARC‘s Linkage Project scheme to support their research collaboration into Lymphocyte Activation Gene-3 (LAG-3) for a further three years.
The collaboration between Immutep and Monash University’s Biomedicine Discovery Institute (BDI) commenced in 2017 and the parties have been investigating the structure of LAG-3 and how it binds to its main ligand, MHC Class II.
Immutep said the new funding will allow further investigation and provide insights into the way LAG-3 controls T cell function. It could lead to the development of new medicines for the treatment of cancer, autoimmune diseases or infectious diseases.
Immutep‘s CSO and CMO, Dr Frederic Triebel, said, “We have been very pleased to collaborate on this project alongside one of the leading international groups in structural immunology led by Professor Rossjohn. We look forward to continuing our studies into LAG-3 and are most grateful, of course, for the support of the ARC.”
The title of the new grant is 'Investigating the atomic structure of an immune cell inhibitory receptor' and will be conducted over three years.
ARC Laureate Fellow at the Monash BDI, Professor Jamie Rossjohn, said, “We thank the ARC for the continued funding to support our collaboration with Immutep. Through the partnership, we are able to combine the state-of-the-art structural biology facilities we have here at the BDI with the expertise of Dr Triebel, who is the pioneer of the LAG-3 immune checkpoint. This is important work and we look foward to furthering our understanding of LAG-3 structure and function.”
Immutep said Professor Rossjohn will have overall oversight of the project and will be responsible for resources management of the grant. Dr Triebel will provide his expertise and facilitate access to relevant LAG-3 specific constructs, reagents and antibodies directed against LAG-3. Immutep said it will also make a financial contribution to the study.