Pharma Focus Asia

Cardurion Pharmaceuticals Licenses Clinical Stage Heart Failure Candidate from Astellas

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

-Cardurion Pharmaceuticals, a biotechnology company focused on the development of novel, next-generation therapeutics for the treatment of cardiovascular diseases, today announced it has entered an exclusive licensing agreement with Astellas to develop and commercialize CRD-733, a PDE-9 inhibitor with the potential to improve cardiac function in heart failure patients.

Under the terms of the agreement, Astellas has granted Cardurion Pharmaceuticals an exclusive, worldwide, royalty-bearing license to research, develop, manufacture and commercialize CRD-733 for the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of cardiovascular-related indications in humans.

Heart failure is a chronic, progressive syndrome in which the heart is unable to adequately meet the body’s needs for blood and oxygen, resulting in shortness of breath, fatigue, and fluid retention. Heart failure can occur with either a weak heart muscle that cannot adequately eject blood, or a muscle that is strong enough, but other factors limiting its ability to fill or increase function, as needed, are impaired. Over 6 million people in the United States have one of these two forms of heart failure1, and this unmet medical need poses the greatest challenge in cardiovascular medicine today. Recent evidence supports that inhibition of PDE-9 has potential to restore heart-protective mechanisms that are dysfunctional in both forms of heart failure.

“Heart failure is an expanding global problem that remains one of the major unmet medical needs in cardiovascular disease,” said David Kass, M.D., scientific advisor at Cardurion Pharmaceuticals and professor of medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, who first discovered the key role of PDE-9 inhibition in heart failure. “PDE-9 is abnormally elevated in human failing hearts, which can impede a natural protective pathway and make the heart more vulnerable to damage. In our studies, inhibiting PDE-9 was able to prevent and reverse heart malfunction brought on by abnormal stress. Inhibiting PDE-9 in patients has the real potential to treat multiple forms of heart failure2.”

“Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death worldwide in both men and women, accounting for over 17 million deaths per year3,” said Daniel Bloomfield, chief executive officer of Cardurion Pharmaceuticals. “We are pleased to enter this agreement with Astellas to develop and commercialize CRD-733 and provide a new therapeutic option to heart failure patients. We look forward to advancing CRD-733 into further clinical development in 2018.”

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