Preclinical Data Further Supports Potential For Treatment of HCMV and Malaria
SAN DIEGO, June 19, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — Artemis Therapeutics, Inc. (OTCQB: ATMS), (“Artemis” or the “Company”), a pharmaceutical company developing new therapies for the treatment of infectious diseases, including cytomegalovirus and malaria, today announced that data on its lead product candidate Artemisone have been published in two separate articles in the journal Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy. The studies indicate that Artemisone in a preclinical setting is a potent inhibitor of human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) replication and the transmissible stages of malaria.
“We are optimistic regarding the potential of Artemisone and the peer-reviewed publication of its activity in both CMV, a major cause of disease in immunocompromised individuals, such as stem cell and other transplant patients, and malaria, which is responsible for more than 400,000 deaths each year, is very encouraging,” said Brian Culley, CEO of Artemis. “Both conditions represent significant worldwide need, and each of these papers demonstrate the promise of Artemisone as a potential future therapy. We are actively working to advance both programs and hope to provide additional updates soon.”
The first paper, published online on June 4, demonstrates Artemisone’s inhibition of replication of an artemisinin-resistant strain of malaria in both intraerythrocytic proliferative asexual and transmissible gametocyte stages. Authored by Richard K. Haynes, Ph.D., adjunct professor in the chemistry department at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology and a research professor at the Centre of Excellence for Pharmaceutical Sciences at South Africa’s North-West University, the paper suggests that it is the capability of Artemisone to attack the disease particularly at the later gametocyte stages that provides significant differentiation from current modalities.
The second publication, authored by Dr. Dana Wolf, chief medical officer at Artemis Therapeutics, demonstrates Artemisone effectively inhibits laboratory-adapted and low-passage clinical strains of HCMV as well as drug-resistant HCMV strains. Further, its antiviral efficacy against HCMV is not only comparable to ganciclovir, but also approximately 10-fold greater than artesunate in all cell lines studied. The data indicates Artemisone is a reversible HCMV inhibitor, targeting an earlier phase of the viral replication cycle than does ganciclovir, suggesting a novel mechanism of action.
Artemis’ lead product candidate, Artemisone (ar-tem-iss-ohn), is being developed as a best-in-class treatment for malaria and first-in-class treatment for CMV. Artemisone is a semi-synthetic 10-alpha-amino derivative of artemisinin, the discovery of which shared one-half of the 2015 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. Artemisone was selected as a therapeutic product candidate based on properties that distinguish it from other artemisinin derivatives, including greater potency, lower predicted neurotoxicity, better stability, half-life, and solubility. Notably, Artemisone relies on a non-DHA metabolic pathway, which distinguishes it from currently used artemisinins. This feature may provide important clinical advantages in terms of fighting resistance, blocking disease transmission, or treating severe and/or cerebral malaria. Additionally, recent laboratory research has shown that the antiviral potency of Artemisone against human cytomegalovirus (CMV) is as robust as the current FDA-approved agent, ganciclovir, and approximately ten times greater than that of a related compound, artesunate. Further in vitro studies with Artemisone have demonstrated efficacy against drug-resistant strains of CMV with evidence for a novel mechanism of action.
About Artemis Therapeutics
Artemis Therapeutics, Inc. is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on the development of new therapies for the treatment and prevention of severe and life-threatening infectious diseases. The Company’s lead product candidate, Artemisone, is a semi-synthetic artemisinin derivative with potent antiviral and antiparasitic properties. The Company currently is evaluating Artemisone for the treatment of P. falciparum malaria and human cytomegalovirus (CMV) infections, including stem cell transplant CMV, solid organ transplant CMV, and congenital CMV. Artemis also plans to evaluate Artemisone for the treatment of additional viral and parasitic diseases. More information is available on the Company’s website: www.artemis-therapeutics.com and Twitter: @ArtemisThera.
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SOURCE Artemis Therapeutics, Inc.