JENKINTOWN, Pa.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--SFA Therapeutics today announced approval of the second key U.S. patent derived from its research & development program, which utilizes microbiome-derived metabolite small molecules as drugs to modulate the body’s anti-inflammatory and immune systems (USPTO #10,231,941).
As a result of this new patent, targeting Ffar2 (GPR43) and Ffar3 (GPR441) and down-regulation of NF-ĸB, the therapeutic applications of SFA’s first major drug, SFA001, will now expand from prevention of the progression of hepatitis B to hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC- the most prevalent form of liver cancer) to direct treatment for patients afflicted with liver fibrosis, NASH, or liver cancer derived from HCC.
Commenting on the significance of this achievement, Dr. Mark Feitelson, Ph.D., Professor of Biology and Chair of the Professional Science Master's Program in Biotechnology at Temple University stated:
“Chronic hepatitis B and C infections, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), and alcoholic liver disease (ALD) are all associated with increased risk for the development of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).
In all these cases, HCC arises on a background of long-term inflammation (hepatitis) and tissue damage. HCC is the fifth most prevalent cancer and second leading cause of cancer related deaths worldwide with over 600,000 new patients diagnosed annually, most of which have a poor prognosis. Thus, there is a pressing medical need to develop new approaches to HCC prevention and treatment.
What SFA Therapeutics has done is to develop compounds from gut bacteria that have anti-inflammatory and anti-tumor activities; and demonstrate in preclinical models that these compounds significantly delay the onset of HCC in 50% of treated animals while blocking the growth of already established tumors.
Although antiviral compounds are available for patients with hepatitis B and C, nothing is available to treat most of the other patients with chronic liver diseases. SFA Therapeutics’ microbiome-derived agents represent a ‘game-changing’ new paradigm. Moreover, these compounds are nontoxic at therapeutic doses, stable, can be taken orally, and will be cost competitive, so that they will be accessible by patients in both developed and developing countries.”
About SFA Therapeutics
SFA Therapeutics is a bio-pharmaceutical company focused on new advancements in the treatment of inflammatory diseases, targeting NF-κB. Chronic inflammation has been implicated in a wide range of diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, lupus (SLE), inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), Crohn's Disease, psoriasis, liver disease and the prevention of relapse/recurrence in AML and CLL. These small-molecule drugs are derived from natural substances and enable a new platform for developing newer, safer treatments aimed at inflammatory diseases currently afflicting patients.
SFA001 has been licensed by Temple University to SFA Therapeutics in Jenkintown, PA.