DS Biopharma was already studying one of its bioactive lipids for non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). The candidate will now also target chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
Headquartered in Dublin (Ireland), DS Biopharma is working on new medicines for medical unmet needs, such as fibrosis. This development of fibrous tissue can affect the lungs, liver or heart.
DS has developed a bioactive lipid technology platform, which includes semi-synthetic fatty acids and has already received an European patent.
These lipids are crucial in the pathways of several conditions including metabolic disorders of the liver and fibrotic disorders.
While there is no known effective way of ‘persuade’ the body to produce more of these lipids, DS has synthesised several of these compounds – which could be delivered topically or orally.
One of its candidates is DS102, which was already being studied for in non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). This liver disease is on the rise and has attracted plenty of investor’s attention.
Now, DS is planning a new programme in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), a group of diseases where airways become thickened, inflamed – and even obstructed (sometimes also from infection) which makes it hard to breathe and oxygen levels to get too low. A Phase IIa trial is now being planned.
This decision follows promising preclinical data that shows that DS102 is significantly sequestered in lung tissue. It has shown bronchodilatory, anti-inflammatory and anti-fibrotic properties.
DS Biopharma’s other clinical candidate (DS107) is also being investigated in atopic dermatitis, a long-term skin disease sometimes linked to hay fever and asthma.
This bioactive lipid platform from DS Biopharma seems promisingly versatile. Could clinical development expand to even more inflammatory diseases?
Learn more about COPD…
Feature Image Credit: Breathe (CC 2.0 nmrmak/Flickr)
Figure 1 Credit: Evans and Hutchinson (2010) Seeing the future of bioactive lipid drug targets. Nature Chemical Biology (doi: 10.1038/nchembio.394)