• New investment will progress treatment of pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH), a rare condition which causes high blood pressure in the blood vessels that supply the lungs and can lead to heart failure.
  • Current approved medications mainly address the symptoms of this rare condition. This novel approach aims to address the underlying causes of the disease.

PARMA, Italy, and CLEVELAND, OH, USA I May 2, 2022 I Chiesi Farmaceutici S.p.A. (Chiesi Group), the international research-focused pharmaceutical and healthcare group, announced today that it has entered into an agreement with Allinaire Therapeutic, LLC, a company founded by BioMotiv, to acquire the worldwide rights to a portfolio of therapeutic monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) against endothelial monocyte-activating polypeptide II (EMAP II) for the potential treatment of PAH.

EMAP II is a non-classical cytokine which impacts apoptosis, cell injury, endothelial cell function and inflammation. Based on the pioneering work by the scientific founders, Matthias Clauss, PhD and Irina Petrache, MD, and their colleagues at Indiana University and National Jewish Health, Allinaire and their network, have demonstrated a pivotal pathogenic role of EMAP II in cardiopulmonary diseases, including PAH, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and viral-induced acute lung injury1,2. They developed anti-EMAP II mAbs which are currently being progressed in early phases as a potential treatment for PAH.

PAH is a rare disease with an incidence of 2–5 per million adults3. Current approved medications mainly address the symptoms of this rare condition and there is an unmet medical need for novel approaches that could delay, or reverse, the disease progression.

“This agreement is further evidence of Chiesi’s commitment to seek out novel treatments for conditions with a high unmet medical need such as PAH” commented Thomas Eichholtz, Head of Global R&D of Chiesi Group. “We believe that an anti-EMAP II mAb is a promising novel approach for the treatment and slowing of disease progression for patients with PAH”.

According to Douglas W.P. Hay, CEO and CSO of Allinaire, “We have made excellent progress in our anti-EMAP II mAb program at Allinaire, working with a multi-disciplinary team of experts in EMAP II science, biologics, and cardiopulmonary disease therapeutics. We are extremely excited to be partnering with Chiesi to advance this novel class of medicines”.

Allinaire will receive an upfront payment, future milestone payments and net sales royalties.

1 Allinaire unpublished data on file.
2 Clauss M, et al. Lung endothelial monocyte-activating protein 2 is a mediator of cigarette smoke-induced emphysema in mice. J. Clin. Invest., 2011; 121: 2470-2479.
3 Hoeper MM, et al.  Review.  A global view of pulmonary hypertension. The Lancet, Respir. Med., 2016; 4 (4): 306-322.

SOURCE: Chiesi