BELLUS Health is focused on developing drugs for rare diseases, starting with conditions that affect the kidneys.
KIACTA™, a novel drug candidate, is partnered with global private equity firm Auven Therapeutics, which is evaluating the potential use of KIACTA™ for the treatment of patients suffering from active pulmonary sarcoidosis, a rare, potentially fatal inflammatory condition that affects the lungs. Auven Therapeutics has developed a clinical Phase 2/3 study protocol to evaluate the safety and efficacy of KIACTA™ in sarcoidosis and an investigational new drug application (IND) for this clinical study could be filed with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the first quarter of 2017. The sarcoidosis program is currently under review by Auven Therapeutics and a decision is expected to be made in the coming months.
In addition, BELLUS Health is developing Shigamab™, an antibody treatment for Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome caused by Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (sHUS). sHUS often leads to dialysis, chronic kidney disease and in some cases death, particularly in children. BELLUS Health has completed an additional pre-clinical study in a sHUS baboon model, in which Shigamab™ was shown to rescue the animals against a lethal dose of toxin when administered up to 48 hours post-intoxication. BELLUS Health has received positive regulatory feedback from the FDA in relation to the clinical Phase 2 study protocol for the assessment of the efficacy and safety of Shigamab™ in the treatment of children suffering from sHUS. BELLUS Health is currently planning the next steps for the initiation of this clinical Phase 2 study and is seeking to secure a strategic partner for the further development of Shigamab™.
BELLUS Health also has economic interests in several other partnered drug development projects, including AMO-01 for Fragile X Syndrome, ALZ-801 for APOE4 homozygous Alzheimer’s disease and an equity stake in an Italian specialty pharma company.
BELLUS Health is based in Laval, Quebec and its shares trade under the ticker BLU on the Toronto Stock Exchange.