Zilucoplan (ZILBRYSQ): The First Approved Drug Derived from mRNA Display for Cyclic Peptides


subcutaneous C5 inhibitor approved for myasthenia gravis from mRNA display screening Press Release, October 2023 Ra Pharmaceuticals, Cambridge, MA / UCB, Brussels, BE

Drug Hunter Team

Zilucoplan is a macrocyclic peptide-containing drug with 15 amino acids in total, targeting the challenging-to-drug C5 complement protein and formulated for self-administered once-daily SC injection. In Sept. 2023, zilucoplan received its first global approval in Japan, followed in Oct. 2023 by FDA approval for gMG patients who are AChR antibody-positive, making zilucoplan the first drug derived from mRNA display for cyclic peptides to be approved. This case study discusses how zilucoplan was discovered and why it’s an important scientific milestone for the industry.



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