24 May 2016
Redx Pharma Plc is pleased to announce that it has reached pre-clinical proof of concept stage with an oncology lead that has the potential to treat leukaemia and other blood cancers. The lead, a reversible BTK inhibitor, offers exciting potential to treat Chronic Lymphocytic Leukaemia (CLL) patients who have become resistant to the gold standard therapy, Imbruvica™ (ibrutinib). This is the seventh program to have advanced through Redx's innovative development pipeline to pre-clinical proof of concept and has been achieved in 20 months, ahead of standard industry averages.
BTK (Bruton's Tyrosine Kinase) is an important enzyme in the B-cell receptor signalling pathway and is implicated in blood cancers such as CLL. Ibrutinib, a key therapy for treating CLL, irreversibly inhibits BTK. However, a significant proportion of CLL patients taking ibrutinib become resistant to therapy due to a genetic mutation that renders ibrutinib ineffective in these patients. Redx is seeking to develop a best-in-class reversible BTK inhibitor which is both active in patients that have acquired resistance to ibrutinib and offers a reduced side-effect profile compared to ibrutinib.
Neil Murray, Chief Executive of Redx, commented:
We are delighted to announce that we have reached pre-clinical proof of concept for an oncology lead that has the potential to treat leukaemia and other blood cancers. CLL is one of the most common types of leukaemia in adults and is not usually curable, with high rates of recurrence. What is particularly exciting about our lead compound, a reversible BTK inhibitor, is that it has the potential to treat ibrutinib resistant CLL patients.
As many as 60% of patients with progressive CLL have developed a resistance to ibrutinib. This presents an urgent need for new treatments that overcome the issue of resistance, and Redx is seeking to develop a best-in-class reversible inhibitor specifically designed to meet this need.
This is the seventh program to have advanced through Redx's innovative pipeline to pre-clinical proof of concept. Once again, we have reached this stage ahead of industry average, achieving pre-clinical proof of concept in 20 months.