Laurent Pharmaceuticals Inc. (the “Company”), a biopharmaceutical company focusing on rare diseases, today announced that it has received the final approval for a CAD 2.7M loan from the Quebec Government through its BioMed Propulsion program. This financing will help support the Company’s Phase 2 clinical study evaluating LAU-7b in adult patients with cystic fibrosis (“CF”).
LAU-7b is an oral drug acting on the resolution phase of the inflammation, with the potential to treat chronic pulmonary inflammation that leads to irreversible lung damage in patients with CF. LAU-7b was also shown to enhance functional CFTR expression in CF airway cells, an effect that was further improved in the presence of a CFTR modulator.
“We are very pleased with the participation from the Quebec Government through its BioMed Propulsion program”, said Radu Pislariu, MD, President and CEO of Laurent Pharmaceuticals. “CF is the most common fatal genetic disease affecting Canadian children and adults, with Quebec having prevalence rates that are among the highest in the world, particularly in the region of Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean region.”
“The Québec government implemented the BioMed Propulsion program with the goal of supporting companies with high growth potential in Québec’s life sciences sector to help them commercialize their research findings. Of course, one of this program’s objectives is to help patients suffering from diseases such as cystic fibrosis to improve their quality of life and treatment options,” Mr. Pierre Fitzgibbon, Minister of Economy and Innovation, stated.
The goal of the APPLAUD trial is to evaluate LAU-7b’s effect on the preservation of lung function in adult patients with CF, by reducing persistent unresolved inflammation in the lung and stimulating the return to homeostasis. LAU-7b is administered on top of the standard of care, including all commercially available CFTR modulators.
The Phase 2 study is currently enrolling patients in US and Canada, and will start recruiting in Australia by the end of 2019. APPLAUD is planned to enroll 136 patients with CF, regardless of their CFTR mutation, for a treatment duration of 6 months.
About Cystic Fibrosis
Cystic Fibrosis (“CF”) is a progressive, life-threatening, genetic disease affecting about 75,000 people worldwide. CF is caused by various mutations in the CFTR gene and is characterized by viscous secretions in different exocrine tissues and an aberrant inflammatory response leading to chronic pulmonary infection and loss in lung function over time. Severe pulmonary dysfunction is the primary cause of death in CF.
About Laurent Pharmaceuticals
Laurent Pharmaceuticals is a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company focusing on rare diseases. The company is currentelly conducting a Phase 2 study evaluating the efficacy and safety of its lead drug candidate, LAU-7b (oral fenretinide), in adult patients with CF. LAU-7b is believed to act on the resolution phase of inflammation by endogenously modulating the metabolism of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), an essential fatty acid involved in the process of healing and return to homeostasis after a bacterial attack or injury. More recently, LAU-7b was shown to also enhance specific lipid micro-domains in the membrane of airways cells affected by CF, resulting in an increase in functional CFTR expression under cellular stress, a self-protective mechanism that was further improved by co-administration of a CFTR modulator. For more information, please visit www.laurentpharma.com.