Akashi gets FDA nod to restart clinical development of DMD drug HT-100

This article was originally published here

Published 23 March 2017

Akashi Therapeutics has secured approval from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to resume clinical development of HT-100 (delayed-release halofuginone) in patients with any of the genetic mutations that cause Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD).

Akashi plans to initiate a new study, HALO-DMD-04.

“We are pleased to learn that the FDA is allowing Akashi to resume the clinical development of HT-100,” said Pat Furlong, Founding President and CEO of Parent Project Muscular Dystrophy (PPMD).

“Preventing fibrosis is an important target and an essential piece of a combination of therapies that will be required to end Duchenne. We are pleased to be partnering with Akashi to develop important therapies for Duchenne.”

The company plans to initiate the new clinical trial as quickly as possible, and is in discussions with potential investors and development partners regarding clinical development and commercialization of HT-100, as well as DT-200 (selective androgen receptor modulator) and AT-300 (cation channel modulator), all of which are novel, complementary compounds with potential to treat all DMD patients independent of their specific genetic mutation.

“Our goal continues to be improving the lives of patients with DMD and other muscle function diseases,” said Marc Blaustein, Chief Executive Officer, Akashi Therapeutics.

“We are pleased that the FDA has agreed with our conclusion that it is appropriate to resume development of HT-100 and look forward to moving ahead with the trial as quickly as possible.”

HALO-DMD-04 will evaluate the safety, tolerability, pharmacokinetic, and pharmacodynamic activity of HT-100 at a new lower dose of 150 µg/day and eliminates the use of antiemetic therapies by participants. Data from previous clinical studies of HT-100 in DMD have indicated the lowest doses tested (as low as 300 µg/day) were at least as effective as higher doses (up to 1500 µg/day) investigated in a subject population that included both ambulant and non-ambulant boys.

HT-100, a delayed-release, orally-delivered therapeutic, is being researched for its ability to reduce fibrosis and inflammation and promote healthy muscle fiber regeneration in DMD patients. In a previously-released analysis of results from trials in patients with DMD, data showed promising improvements in muscle strength for boys treated in the lowest three dose cohorts.

These strength improvements, rather than just a slowed rate of decline, are a highly unusual finding in ambulant DMD boys age 7 and older and in non-ambulant DMD boys.

Source: Company Press Release

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