DiaKine Therapeutics will partner with AdPharma to develop its pipeline of drugs aimed at reversing diabetes. The first drug is Lisofylline (LSF), an immune modulating compound that reversed type 1 diabetes in mice in combination with another agent, according to DiaKine.
"AdPharma has proven capabilities in pharmaceutical development and contract research and has been selected as DiaKine's partner to assist in the development of our pipeline of drugs that approach the treatment of diabetes in a novel way: preserving or restoring the patient's own insulin producing cells," says Keith D. Ignotz, CEO and president of DiaKine. "Our arrangement with AdPharma accelerates our drug development process, and as a partner, provides a creative and nondilutive means to advance our pipeline."
DiaKine plans to take its immune modulator, LSF, into a Phase II proof-of-principal trial. It then expects to collaborate or license it to a large pharmaceutical company for further development and commercialization. LSF has already been formulated into a product on the market to improve the viability and insulin producing capabilities of harvested islet cells prior to transplant.
"We are very pleased to be working with DiaKine on such an important and potentially groundbreaking portfolio of drug candidates," remarks Vivekananda Ramana, M.D., co-founder and COO of AdPharma, who has been elected to DiaKine’s board of directors. "We believe that we can assist DiaKine in quickly taking its lead drug to Phase II trials and assist in advancing its oral compounds, with equal or better action, into clinical studies in a highly efficient manner."
LSF is a synthetic small molecule with anti-inflammatory properties that blocks autoimmune damage to insulin-producing cells. In a study of nonobese diabetic mice, DiaKine reported that the treatment completely reversed diabetes as seen by restored glucose homeostasis. The company added that there was evidence of new cell growth in the area of the islet cells in the mice given the combined therapy. Also, LSF has shown in human islet cell studies to reduce cell death by more than 30% and improve insulin output capabilities, according to DiaKine.
DiaKine is also developing LSF and other immune modulators drug therapies for type 1, type 2 diabetes, and related complications.