Synthekine Licenses Additional Cytokine Programs

April 22, 2021 / MENLO PARK, Calif. – Synthekine Inc., an engineered cytokine therapeutics company, today announced a new agreement with Stanford University to license cytokine partial agonist programs for IL-10, IL-12 and IL-22. These programs augment a growing pipeline of selective cytokine partial agonists at Synthekine that is maturing toward clinical development.

Most cytokines are pleiotropic and drive a range of signaling responses across multiple cell types, which limits their potential as therapeutics. Research conducted in the laboratory of Chris Garcia, PhD, a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator and professor of structural biology at Stanford, has shown that IL-10, IL-12, and IL-22 can be tuned to achieve specific signaling. Modifying these cytokines enables selective activity to be directed to specific cell types for therapeutic benefit, often by decoupling efficacy from toxic effects driven by non-specific immune system activation. Synthekine plans to leverage discoveries in IL-12, recently published in the journal Cell, to develop potential treatments for cancer, and the discoveries in IL-10, recently published in the journal Science, and IL-22, recently published in the journal Immunity, to develop potential treatments for autoimmune disease.

“Synthekine was founded two years ago with several cytokine partial agonist programs based on the work from the Garcia Laboratory, and we have already moved two of those programs into IND enabling development,” said Debanjan Ray, CEO of Synthekine. “Extending our license with Stanford allows us to bring in three new promising cytokine partial agonist programs that we believe have considerable potential in treating cancer and autoimmune disease.”

About Synthekine

Synthekine is an engineered cytokine therapeutics company developing disease-optimized treatments. The company uses immunological insights to guide targeted protein engineering to generate transformative medicines for cancer and autoimmune disorders. Using the principles of cytokine partial agonism and immunological specificity, Synthekine designs differentiated therapeutics to be both safe and efficacious. Its lead programs have shown promising efficacy and tolerability in preclinical studies, and it is developing additional cytokine partial agonists that selectively modulate key pathways of the immune system. For more information, visit

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