Synvista Therapeutics To Develop ALT-2074 For Psoriasis Treatment
Synvista Therapeutics, Novel Therapeutic Technologies to provide Synvista with formulation work for a topical cream formulation of ALT-2074 for the treatment of psoriasis. ALT-2074 is one of the Company's lead compounds under development for use in cardiovascular disease.
"We believe that ALT-2074 is a logical choice for a potential therapy in mild-to-moderate plaque psoriasis. TNF-alpha is an established target for drug development in psoriasis and other autoimmune diseases. The effectiveness of approved TNF antagonists may relate to their demonstrated ability to inhibit the induction of cell adhesion molecules and consequent migration of pro-inflammatory cells into inflamed tissue," said Noah Berkowitz, M.D., Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of Synvista Therapeutics. "ALT-2074 can block TNF-alpha activated expression of cell adhesion molecules, I-CAM and V-CAM, which may be essential for cellular migration. As such, we believe that a topical formulation of ALT-2074 may be a promising therapy for mild-to-moderate plaque psoriasis, without the side effects associated with systemic treatment using anti-TNF biologics."
"We have identified sites in Israel to perform a planned Phase 2 clinical trial for plaque psoriasis beginning mid-2008, pending approval from the Ministry of Health in Israel," added Dr. Berkowitz. "The Ministry of Health is already familiar with ALT-2074 since it approved its use in our ongoing Study 203. Based on our current timeline, assuming timely receipt of regulatory approval, we hope to announce study results in the fourth quarter of 2008. We expect this psoriasis program will help to expand our product portfolio and contribute to the long-term growth of Synvista Therapeutics while opening a new potential market opportunity for our product compounds."
According to the National Institutes of Health as many as 7.5 million Americans have psoriasis, a non-contagious, lifelong skin disease. The most common form, plaque psoriasis, appears as raised, red patches or lesions covered with a silvery white buildup of dead skin cells, called scale. Psoriasis varies from person to person, both in severity and how it responds to treatment. Psoriasis is now recognized to be a disease that can be modified by drugs that inhibit TNF-alpha signaling. Current treatment for severe psoriasis includes biologic drugs that are costly, potentially toxic, and require intravenous administration. In addition, steroids often work for patients with mild-to-moderate psoriasis, yet they carry side effects and are generally not recommended for long-term use.