Targeting exacerbations in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
The world has many more viruses that cause suffering and death in vulnerable people than we have antiviral treatments to fight them. New antiviral medicines present an enormous opportunity for progress, particularly to improve health outcomes for people who are disproportionately impacted by common viruses due to health conditions, age, or weakened immune systems.
Those with fewer financial resources or in poverty are diagnosed with COPD later in the course of the disease, when symptoms are more severe. As a result, especially for African Americans, the outcomes of COPD are generally poorer. (Mamary 2018, Eisner 2011, Woo 2021). Altesa’s clinical program will address these disparities in vulnerable populations by ensuring diversity and inclusion in our clinical enrollment and development plans while supporting programs and national initiatives that aim to reduce disparities in diagnoses.
Our team has a clear vision for global opportunities and is poised to deliver on the potential of our proven platform and successful leadership.
Altesa’s value lies in its unique strengths:
- Vapendavir, a Phase 2 clinical drug with an excellent safety profile and confirmed antiviral activity in humans. Vapendavir is a broad-spectrum capsid inhibitor with potent activity across all rhinovirus families and other enteroviruses, including poliovirus.
- Pre-negotiated licensing options and a Sponsored Research Agreement with Emory/DRIVE that provides unique access to a robust and substantially de-risked R&D pipeline, in addition to world-class, industry-trained scientists.
- Licensed the antiviral drug ALT-2023: a broad-spectrum nucleoside analog active against most enteroviruses and flaviviruses, including rhinovirus, hepatitis C, yellow fever, and dengue. Altesa expects to advance ALT-2023 to human clinical trials in calendar year 2023.
- Proven platform for mechanism-based development of novel, broad-spectrum antivirals and combinations, including some of the world’s most successful antiviral drugs.
Our first target: presenting exacerbations in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) caused by viral infections.
More than 16.4 million Americans, or 6.6% of U.S. adults, have been diagnosed with COPD. COPD is the third leading cause of death worldwide, according to the World Health Organization, and it is expected to become the #1 cause of death worldwide within 15 years. Those with limited financial resources, especially those in urban areas, are often diagnosed later in the disease, which is associated with more severe outcomes.
Viral infections are the primary causes of acute health deterioration in people living with COPD. Among viral causes, rhinovirus—the predominant cause of the common cold—is the most frequent culprit in these exacerbations of COPD.
Studies indicate that, by 2038, people with COPD in the United States will suffer:
Altesa will target this vicious cycle of infection, deterioration, suffering, and death—and in doing so, will aim to save valuable financial resources that can be further invested to keep more people healthy. With our in-licensed, novel antiviral treatment Vapendavir advancing to later-stage clinical trials, our goal is to provide it as a commercially available drug for vulnerable patients.
Altesa has licensed exclusive development rights to molecules de-risked with proven antiviral activity and significant pre-clinical development from Drug Innovation Ventures at Emory (DRIVE).
This priority access is a critical differentiator as it allows Altesa to efficiently advance promising molecules into clinical trials for patients in need.
Unlike most bacteria, which can generally be killed by antibiotics, viruses pose a series of challenges, including a huge range of genetic diversity, and an ability to rapidly mutate and hide within sheltered compartments of the body. Altesa’s antiviral medications are specifically being developed to overcome these challenges and defeat viral pathogens.
Our process follows the proven development strategy behind two of the world’s most successful anti-viral drugs: Emtriva which combats HIV/AIDS and Molnupiravir which treats COVID-19.
Globally researchers are working day and night toward scientific discovery. But just one in 25,000 scientific papers published leads to a new drug. And that journey takes an estimated 15 years and costs $2.6 billion dollars. That’s too long. That’s too much money.
Mechanism-based drug development, makes the process faster, more efficient and cost-effective. It leverages years and years of hard earned research data and integrates it with diverse data sets from the lab, cell testing, animal research and other pre-human trial data.
Our highly complex computation models enable us to bring a new and elegant understanding to the drug development process. They bring predictiveness to human responsiveness to a drug, including better insights into which humans will respond. By stimulating a range of key molecular interactions, we better understand whom to recruit.