Pharmaxis reports new positive results for LOXL2 program

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Sydney-based Pharmaxis (ASX:PXS) has announced positive results from the Phase 1 clinical trial for the second of its Lysyl Oxidase Like 2 (LOXL2) inhibitor compounds.

LOXL2 is being developed to treat fibrotic diseases such as Non‐Alcoholic Steatohepatitis (NASH) and Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF).

The company’s two compounds are highly selective small molecule inhibitors of LOXL2 that can be administered orally.

The double-blind placebo-controlled study repeated the positive results seen in the Phase 1 trial of the first inhibitor compound.

"Significant target engagement of the LOXL2 enzyme by both compounds has now been demonstrated in blood serum for a full 24 hours from a single dose over a 14-day period, with the second compound achieving more than 85% inhibition over 24 hours from a 100mg daily dose, achieving the target for this program," said the company.

“Several large pharma companies are interested in the Pharmaxis program where both of our LOXL2 inhibitors have now successfully completed phase 1 studies and demonstrated a best in class profile with 24-hour inhibition of the target enzyme from a single daily dose," said Pharmaxis CEO Gary Phillips.

"In a further significant scientific advancement we have also managed to underline the relevance of the program to potential partners by using our proprietary research tools to confirm that our compounds directly inhibit the activity of the raised levels of LOXL2 seen in diseased tissue from NASH and IPF animal models.”

He continued, “The only remaining elements necessary to finalise the data package that companies are now conducting diligence on, are the 3-month toxicity studies on both compounds which are due to report later this quarter.

"This is slightly delayed versus initial expectations due to the availability of time slots at the contract organisations we use but successful 3-month studies will significantly enhance the LOXL2 program.  Following the completion of the data package, Pharmaxis intends to conduct a final series of scientific briefings to potential partners before moving to commercial partnering discussions to secure a comprehensive licensing agreement in 2019.”