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Antisense Drug ISIS-11 for HCV Therapy & GSK Deal with ISIS Pharmaceuticals; microRNA therapy research for HCV
 
 
  Antisense Drug ISIS 14803 Did Not Reduce HCV RNA
Antisense Drug ISIS 14803 Did Not Reduce HCV RNA. "A phase I trial of an antisense inhibitor of Hepatitis c virus (ISIS 14803), administered to chronic ...
www.natap.org/2005/HCV/110205_02.htm
 
New HCV Gene microRNA Therapy Research
Nov 19, 2007 ... The Company has successfully commercialized the world's first antisense drug and has 18 drugs in development. Isis' drug development ...
www.natap.org/2007/HCV/111907_01.htm
 
Researchers Identify Potential New Target for Hepatitis C Treatment
 
A team of scientists including University of Utah researchers has discovered that binding of a potent inhibitor of the hepatitis C virus (HCV) to the genetic material of the virus causes a major conformational change that may adversely affect the ability of the virus to replicate.....Isis-11 binds to a region of the viral RNA that is common to all six genotypes of HCV, altering the structure in a way that likely prevents the synthesis of viral proteins. The Isis-11 inhibitor effectively eliminated a bent RNA conformation that other laboratories have shown is required for the proper function of the HCV genomic RNA.

 
Mar 31, 2010
 
SALT LAKE CITY - A team of scientists including University of Utah researchers has discovered that binding of a potent inhibitor of the hepatitis C virus (HCV) to the genetic material of the virus causes a major conformational change that may adversely affect the ability of the virus to replicate. This discovery, published in the March 29 early edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, provides a potential new target for structure-based design of new hepatitis C treatments.
 
Hepatitis C is a major public health problem affecting as many as 170 million people worldwide, with 2 million to 3 million new cases diagnosed each year. In the United States, HCV infection is the major cause of liver cancer and liver transplantation and it results in the death of approximately 10,000 people each year. Currently, the most effective treatment for hepatitis C is an agent called pegylated interferon, which is often combined with an antiviral drug called ribavirin.
 
"The available therapies for hepatitis C infection have limited effectiveness, with less than a 50 percent response," says Darrell R. Davis, Ph.D., the lead author and professor and interim chair of medicinal chemistry and professor of biochemistry at the University of Utah. "However, small molecules that inhibit viral replication have been reported and they represent potential opportunities for new, more effective HCV treatments."
 
HCV is a member of the Flaviviridae family of viruses, which also includes the viruses that cause yellow fever and dengue. There are six major genotypes of HCV, which differ slightly in their genetic constitution and vary in their response to treatment. HCV has a single strand of ribonucleic acid (RNA) as its genetic material and the virus replicates by copying this RNA. Previous research has shown that the three-dimensional structure of HCV RNA appears to be crucial for initiating the viral replication process.
 
Davis and his colleagues, including scientists from Isis Pharmaceuticals Inc., in Carlsbad, Calif., studied a potent small-molecule HCV replication inhibitor called Isis-11 to understand how it inhibits viral replication. They discovered that Isis-11 binds to a region of the viral RNA that is common to all six genotypes of HCV, altering the structure in a way that likely prevents the synthesis of viral proteins. The Isis-11 inhibitor effectively eliminated a bent RNA conformation that other laboratories have shown is required for the proper function of the HCV genomic RNA.
 
"Binding of Isis-11 resulted in a major conformational change in a specific region of HCV RNA that is thought to be critical for viral replication," says Davis. "This alteration in structure provides a possible mechanism for the antiviral activity of Isis-11 and other HCV replication inhibitors in that chemical class."
 
It is possible that, because HCV replication inhibitors like Isis-11 bind to a region of RNA that is conserved among all genotypes of the virus, they might be effective against a majority of HCV genotypes. Davis and his colleagues also noted that Isis-11 binds with low affinity to HCV RNA, resulting in a relatively loose bond and suggesting that there is considerable potential for optimizing this class of HCV replication inhibitors by modifying them to have tighter bonds to the genetic material of the virus.
 
"Now that we know the structure of the inhibitor-found form of the HCV RNA we can use this structure as a basis for a design strategy that will increase the anti-viral activity of these inhibitors," says Davis. "Hopefully, our findings will eventually lead to a new class of highly potent and specific HCV therapeutics."
 
Isis Pharmaceuticals provided the Isis compound for this study, but did not give any funding for the research.
 

Isis Pharma and Glaxo in $1.5B development deal
 
(AP) - 2 days ago
 
CARLSBAD, Calif. - Isis Pharmaceuticals Inc. said Wednesday it will work with British drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline PLC to develop treatments for rare diseases in a partnership that could bring Isis almost $1.5 billion in payments.
 
Isis develops drugs that use antisense technology, which stops the production of disease-causing proteins by blocking messenger RNA, the molecule that transfers genetic information. Isis will work with GlaxoSmithKline on as many as six drugs to treat unspecified rare and serious conditions, including infectious illnesses and diseases that can cause blindness.
 
In morning trading, Isis stock jumped $1.01, or nearly 10 percent, to $11.31. GlaxoSmithKline's U.S.-listed shares rose 5 cents to $38.28.
 
GlaxoSmithKline, one of the world's largest drugmakers, will pay Isis $35 million upfront. Isis will handle early research and development on the drug candidates, and it could get about $20 million per program if the drugs reach mid-stage testing.
 
At that time, GlaxoSmithKline will have the option to license the drugs and take over all further development and marketing. Isis said total milestone payments would be close to $1.5 billion if development of all six programs is successful. If any of the drugs are approved and reach the market, Isis will receive royalty payments of up to 10 percent on sales.
 
Since 2008, GlaxoSmithKline has worked with Isis joint venture Regulus Therapeutics on treatments for inflammatory diseases. Last month, the companies expanded that partnership to include drug candidates for hepatitis C. Regulus is a joint venture between Isis and Alnylam Pharmaceuticals Inc.
 
Isis' other partners include Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. and Genzyme Corp.
 
 
 
 
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