WARRINGTON, Pa., Nov. 3, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Windtree Therapeutics, Inc. (Nasdaq:WINT), a biotechnology company focused on developing aerosolized KL4 surfactant therapies for respiratory diseases, announced today that recently presented preclinical data at the 62 nd Radiation Research Society Annual Meeting suggest that KL4 surfactant could potentially be an effective medical countermeasure to mitigate acute and chronic/late-phase radiation-induced lung injury (pneumonopathy) due to exposure from a nuclear accident or act of terrorism. The Company believes that, as a possible additional application, KL4 surfactant may also mitigate radiation pneumonopathy associated with cancer radiation therapy.
"While we remain primarily focused on the rigorous and timely execution of the AEROSURF® phase 2 clinical development program for premature infants with respiratory distress syndrome (RDS), a Phase I SBIR grant of $600,000 from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) provided us the opportunity to explore the use of KL4 surfactant to mitigate damage to lungs after radiation exposure," commented Craig Fraser, President and Chief Executive Officer. "We are very encouraged by the results of this early preclinical work and are grateful for the support provided by the NIH. Based on the results of this initial study, Windtree was awarded $3 million in additional funding from the NIAID to support the further exploration of aerosolized KL4 surfactant as a potential medical countermeasure for radiation exposure." In this initial study, KL4 surfactant was administered via an intranasal route into the lungs of C57/BL6 mice 24-hours following exposure to a single fraction of high-dose (13.5 Gy) thoracic-targeted X-ray irradiation (XRT). Mice were evaluated for evidence of reduced blood oxygenation and lung inflammation between two to four weeks post-XRT, and lung fibrosis, chronic pneumonitis, oxidative stress and local and systemic inflammation at 18-weeks post-XRT, by assessing lung function, and analyzing bronchoalveolar fluid (BALF), serum and lung tissue.