Blade Therapeutics announced that the Phase 2 clinical study of the company’s investigational therapeutic, BLD-2660, has enrolled half of the anticipated 120 coronavirus disease-19 (COVID-19) pneumonia patients.
Started in May 2020, BLADE-CONQUER (ClinicalTrials.gov NCT04334460) is a double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial assessing the efficacy and safety of BLD-2660 on lung function and recovery time in hospitalized patients with pneumonia due to confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection. BLD-2660 is dosed orally twice a day. The trial permits concomitant use of approved therapeutics including Remdesivir.
“We have great hopes that BLD-2660 will speed the recovery process for SARS-CoV-2 infected patients. We thank the hard-working medical teams who are tirelessly treating sick patients and assisting us in recruiting for this important study,” said Wendye Robbins, M.D., president and Chief Executive Officer of Blade Therapeutics, a leader in the fields of fibrosis, COVID-19 pathogenesis and inflammatory biology. “The timeline remains on track. We expect to complete enrollment in 3Q-2020 and provide topline results in 4Q-2020.”
BLD-2660 is a small-molecule investigational medicine designed to target a specific group of cysteine proteases called dimeric calpains (calpain 1, 2 and 9). Over-activity of dimeric calpains leads to inflammation and fibrosis.
Use of BLD-2660 has the potential to stop – or even reverse – the overactivation of the immune system and progression of fibrosis in several organs, including the lungs and liver. BLD-2660 is also known to downregulate calprotectin, a protein complex and neutrophil activation marker that tracks with lung dysfunction.
“BLD-2660 offers a novel approach to quell runaway cytokine activity and tissue damage response as a result of SARS-CoV-2 infection,” noted Gary Patou, M.D., Chief Medical Officer of Blade Therapeutics. “With the number of people affected by COVID-19 growing daily and few treatment options available, it is essential that we move quickly.”
Fibrosis is the permanent thickening or scarring of organ tissue in response to inflammation or damage caused by infection, altered metabolism, diseases or toxins. As a result of fibrotic scarring, tissue no longer functions normally, leading to worsening disability and death. Diseases characterized by uncontrolled, progressive fibrosis include idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF), non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) and systemic sclerosis (SSc).
Source: Company Press Release