APP-401, APP-069 and other anti-HIV leads isolated from screening over 10,000 marine microorganism fractions in cytoprotection and cytotoxicity assays
HIV – A Serious, Deadly Disease with Pandemic Potential
Currently, there are about 40 million people living with HIV worldwide. In 2005 alone, 4.1 million became newly infected and 2.8 million died because of AIDS, and the overall number of people living with HIV has continued to increase with each successive year. There is no vaccine against HIV, and AIDS, if untreated, will lead to the death of over 95% of infected individuals 10 years post-infection.
Thus, new and cost-effective drugs, preferably directed at different viral proteins, need to be developed to keep ahead of this viral pandemic.
Nature as a Source of Novel Anti-HIV Drugs
Most of the anti-HIV drugs to date have been identified through rationale drug design or screening of chemical compounds. More recently, attention has focused on screening natural resources or products for antiviral compounds, which should lead to a more diverse set of compounds with correspondingly more diverse activity.
We are seeking a strategic partner to collaborate with in order to (1) isolate, purify, identify, characterize and structurally elucidate the bioactive compounds in five of the most anti-HIV active marine microorganisms; (2) evaluate in vitro mechanisms of action and any in vitro synergistic or additive effects with current antiretroviral therapies; and (3) evaluate the in vivo efficacy and toxicity of the purified anti-HIV compounds in a transgenic animal model. This research will be utilized to select a unique, lead anti-HIV candidate with a novel mechanism of action for clinical evaluation.
Subsequently, we plan to conduct IND-enabling preclinical studies of toxicity, pharmacology and efficacy studies, file an IND with the FDA and conduct clinical trials with a pharmaceutical partner.