GLEN ALLEN, Va., March 19, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Star Scientific, Inc. (NASDAQ: STSI), through its wholly owned subsidiary, Rock Creek Pharmaceuticals, Inc., announced today that it has received positive preliminary results from a study investigating the effects of anatabine in an animal model of idiopathic inflammatory bowel disease, Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. This study, performed by researchers in the Department of Medicine at the University of Virginia, assessed the effects of anatabine administration on clinical and histologic manifestations of colitis in a mouse model of colonic inflammation that has many features of a major form of human inflammatory bowel disease.
This animal model of inflammatory bowel disease, in which bowel inflammation is induced in mice by the administration of a chemical known as DSS (dextran sodium sulphate) in the drinking water, was chosen because it is a very well established and highly reproducible model of colonic inflammation. More importantly, this model allowed for an examination of the effect of anatabine on the development and severity of inflammation (colitis prevention), as well as on the recovery from inflammation and repair of tissue damage (colitis treatment).
Preliminary results from the prevention phase of the study showed that animals given anatabine in their drinking water had a statistically significantly (p < 0.05) lower score in the primary clinical disease activity index as compared to the score of mice receiving only DSS. The disease activity index is the summation of scores from three parameters assessed daily: weight loss, stool consistency, and blood in the stool (hematochezia). Lower scores represent lower levels of disease activity. Anatabine treatment significantly reduced diarrhea and watery stool during induction of the inflammatory condition. Anatabine supplementation after inflammation was established was less conclusive because mice in both the anatabine and control groups decreased the amount of water they drank by almost 50% during the first few days of the recovery regimen. Therefore, the amount of anatabine received by the anatabine treated group of mice was much lower than intended during recovery.