BioLineRx (NASDAQ: BLRX)(TASE: BLRX), a biopharmaceutical development company, announced today that following promising pre-clinical data, EDP-14, for the treatment of severe and persistent asthma, has been added to the Company's main therapeutic pipeline. The project is now named BL-9010. Previously, the project was developed under BioLineRx’s Early Development Program.
BL-9010, a novel bi-specific antibody treatment for severe and persistent asthma, targets and links together two immunological modulators - IgE and CD300a. Allergen-bound IgE activates cells involved in allergic responses, such as mast cells, while CD300a inhibits immune responses. Professor Francesca Levi-Schaffer from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, the inventor of BL-9010, found that CD300a is expressed on mast cells and that linking IgE with CD300a using a bi-specific antibody leads to potent inhibition of allergic reactions characteristic of asthma. In murine models of experimental asthma, BL-9010 significantly blocked allergic responses. Importantly, this could be reproduced in human mast cells, where BL-9010 was shown to inhibit the allergic reaction of these cells in-vitro. The human mast cells were activated by IgE molecules from allergic patients and by specific allergens, mimicking the human disease, while BL-9010 prevented the release of allergy-mediating substances by the cells.
"Asthma is a highly prevalent disease with no satisfactory cure that affects millions of people around the world," said Dr. Kinneret Savitsky, CEO of BioLineRx. "The results of the pre-clinical trials were extremely impressive and convincing, and raise hopes that BL-9010 will be an effective treatment. As a result, the project is now being advanced to our main product pipeline and will be further developed at an accelerated pace. Due to its unique mechanism of action, promising
results and the true unmet medical need, this project, although still in pre-clinical stages of development, is already attracting the interest of potential partners."
BL-9010 was developed to treat severe and persistent asthma patients, but may also potentially treat chronic urticaria as well as additional allergic conditions.