AEterna Zentaris Inc. (NASDAQ: AEZS) announced that the U.S Patent and Trademark Office gave the University of Sheffield, its licensor, an allowance notice after the latter filed a Patent No.16/608,611 application. This application covers AEZS-150, a drug candidate for Aeterna.
The USPTO typically grants the allowance after receiving an application and deciding to grant it.
According to Aeterna’s CEO, Dr. Klaus Paulini, the company is happy to advance to the next step of its partnership. Adding to its IP portfolio is part of its strategy in their joint project. Moreover, the company hopes that granting the application would protect their intellectual property until 2038.
AEZS-150 treats hypothyroidism in adults
The company is developing AEZS-150 to treat adults with chronic hypothyroidism. The drug works by providing a Parathyroid hormone (PTH) analog to delay its extraction from the body by a week or two.
Primary hypothyroidism, which is incredibly rare, occurs when the body cannot produce enough PTH. This hormone plays a role in clearing renal phosphate from the body and calcium homeostasis. If left untreated, the disease leads to cardiac arrhythmias, seizures, twitching, muscle cramping, and renal dysfunction.
The company develops therapies for disease with little intervention
Primary hypothyroidism affects about 23-37 out of 100,000 people in the U.S, and the U.K. Aeterna is a pharmaceutical company that focuses on creating and marketing diagnostic tools and therapies for diseases with little intervention. For this reason, the company is trying to develop a treatment for primary hypothyroidism, which is rare.
One of the company’s most successful projects was the development of macimorelin. This drug became the first to receive approval from the European Commission and the U.S Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for diagnosing the deficiency of growth hormone in adults.
The test is also the only adult oral test to receive approval from these regulators to date. Currently, Aeterna and Novo Nordisk A/S (NYSE: NVO) are working on modifying macimorelin to treat the disease in children, an area with very little intervention.
The company is also working on theories to address unmet needs for several diseases, including ALS and Parkinson’s Disease. It is also developing vaccines against Chlamydia trachomatis and COVID-19.