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GEN News Highlights : Jun 26, 2012

RXi Pharmaceuticals Launches First Clinical Trial of RNAi Compound

RXI-109 is designed to reduce or prevent skin scarring following trauma or surgery.

RXi Pharmaceuticals launched its first-ever clinical trial of an RNAi compound using its self-delivering RNAi therapeutic platform (sd-rxRNA). The compound, RXI-109, is designed to reduce or prevent skin scarring following trauma or surgery, and is intended to reduce disfiguring hypertrophic scarring and keloids.

RXi's Phase I clinical trial is a dose escalation study designed to evaluate safety and tolerability of RXI-109 in humans, and may provide preliminary evidence of the reduction of surgical scars. RXi said it successfully dosed its first subject for the trial following completion of toxicological studies and clearance of its IND submission by FDA.

Until now, RXI-109 effectively silenced connective tissue growth factor (CTGF), a key regulator of scar formation in the skin and other biological pathways involved in fibrosis, both in vitro in cell culture and in vivo in rodent skin models.

RXI-109 is RXi’s first RNAi product candidate, and is based on the work of the company’s scientific founder, Nobel Laureate Craig Mello, professor at the University of Massachusetts Medical School.