There are no drugs that can provide a cure for Alzheimer’s disease. Five drugs are on the market, but they at best alleviate symptoms for 6-12 months and offer no cure. Numerous other drugs are under development, but there have been repeated failures in recent clinical trials. The two main types of medication used to treat Alzheimer’s disease are cholinesterase inhibitors and NMDA receptor antagonists. Cholinesterase inhibitors include donepezil hydrochloride (Aricept), rivastigmine (Exelon) and galantamine (Reminyl). The NMDA receptor antagonist is memantine (Ebixa).
PharmaKure is a clinical stage drug platform company. Its objective is to accelerate the development of therapies addressing neurodegeneration disease caused by protein misfolding/protein aggregation, such as Alzheimer’s disease (AD), Parkinson’s disease (PD) and rare disease Gertsmann-Straussler Scheinker (GSS) through the use of ‘re-purposing’ of previously approved drugs.
PharmaKure primary strategy is to complete Phase II clinical trials. PharmaKure’s lead candidate, PK 051, is a reformulation of two approved drugs targeting toxic b-amyloid oligomers (aggregates), a characteristic hallmark of ‘plaques’ in the brains of patients. In vitro and cell studies have shown that the drugs synergistically act as protein dis-aggregators. Pre-clinical studies using the combined drugs in an Alzheimer’s mice model demonstrated a reduction in plaques by 40%. Because these two drugs are already approved, the company plans to move directly to Phase IIa/b trials in 2021 with a target to negotiate an out-licensing deal upon completion.
PharmaKure’s proprietary SSV technology (Screen-Select-Validate) created by the company is the engine to search for and develop new therapies from approved drugs to build out the pipeline, patent them, and then take them into fast-track clinical trials.