uniQure, a leader in human gene therapy, today announced the acquisition of InoCard GmbH, an innovative, early-stage biotechnology company focused on the development of gene therapy approaches for cardiac disease.
InoCard has developed a novel gene therapy to preclinical proof of concept, for the one-time treatment of congestive heart failure (CHF), a rapidly progressing disease affecting 26 million people worldwide. InoCard founders Prof. Patrick Most and Prof. Hugo Katus will join uniQure as Managing Director of uniQure in Germany and Chairman of the Scientific Advisory Board, for Cardiovascular Diseases, respectively.
InoCard’s lead program is a gene therapy to express the calcium-binding protein S100A1, which has been shown by Profs. Most and Katus to be a master regulator of myocardial function. The therapy was developed based on their fundamental discovery that S100A1 is downregulated in CHF and administration of S100A1 has demonstrated in vivo beneficial effects on contractile force, growth control of heart muscle cells and rhythm stability of the heart and is also able to adapt the heart’s energy supply to increased cardiac output.