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Improved Oral P-selectin Blocker for Prophylactic Sickle Cell Disease Therapy

Award Information
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services
Branch: National Institutes of Health
Contract: 1R44HL136117-01
Agency Tracking Number: R44HL136117
Amount: $1,675,225.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: NHLBI
Solicitation Number: PAR14-088
Solicitation Year: 2014
Award Year: 2017
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2017-09-21
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2019-08-31
Small Business Information
108 EAGLE TRACE DR, Half Moon Bay, CA, 94019-2286
DUNS: 961937666
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 (415) 203-0436
Business Contact
Phone: (415) 203-0436
Research Institution
Abstract Sickle cell disease SCD is a poorly treated inherited debilitating condition for which Vanguard Therapeutics Inc is developing a promising new long term oral therapy A dire need exists for our drug as the millions of SCD patients worldwide and in the US continue to suffer with recurring pain episodes disability and premature death Current treatments have well defined limitations and many drugs under development target resolution rather than prevention of acute events Most clinical events of SCD are driven by abnormal blood flow Strikingly acute pain crises are caused by stoppage of blood flow in small vessels While the traditional paradigm of deoxygenation induced sickle hemoglobin polymerization and red cell sickling is necessary for sickle cell anemia it is not sufficient to explain the impaired blood flow that drives the disease Several mechanisms that impair blood flow are unrelated to polymerization the frequency of acute painful vaso occlusive episodes does not correlate with the number of red blood cells RBC that are most disposed to sickling but rather with the number of RBC that are least sickling prone which are also the stickiest Because sickle RBC sticking to P selectin on the cells that line blood vessels is fundamental both to the continuous impairment and the sudden stoppage of blood flow we are targeting P selectin with our therapy In vitro in vivo and preliminary clinical data show that the P selectin blocking compound pentosan polysulfate sodium PPS improves microvascular blood flow in SCD However commercially available PPS is not ideal SCD therapy because of its marginal oral bioavailability and limited duration of action A US patent application has been filed for an improved second generation PPS component VTI that has greater homogeneity P selectin blocking activity and oral bioavailability than PPS Funding this Phase II SBIR proposal will support IND enabling activities for our VTI drug product including validating P selectin blocking activity in vivo in a mouse SCD model designing and formulating dosage forms that increase absorption and prolong activity optimizing bioavailability pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics and conducting pilot tox studies in experimental animals This work will advance our compound toward production of good manufacturing practices GMP dosage forms for use as an optimized GMP drug substance in projected human trials foster readiness for a pre IND meeting with the FDA and facilitate preparation for clinical trials These IND enabling activities will further the companyandapos s ability to gain funding and partners for product commercialization Vanguardandapos s overarching goal to be supported by this Phase II SBIR is to improve the quality of life of SCD patients by bringing to market an effective oral P selectin blocking drug that prevents sickle red blood cell sticking to the lining of blood vessels improves blood flow and averts acute painful episodes the once daily administration of which will promote patient compliance Sickle cell disease is a painful debilitating condition that afflicts millions of patients worldwide and approximately in the United States Although current treatment options available for these patients are insufficient a drug called pentosan polysulfate sodium has been shown to improve sickle cell blood flow and could prevent the painful debilitating symptoms of the disease Vanguard Therapeutics Inc is developing an improved pentosan polysulfate sodium product that will be better absorbed as a pill and if successful will deliver effective long term therapy for sickle cell disease and provide advantages to the company for funding partnering and product commercialization

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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