Findings From This Phase 2 Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis Trial Look Promising

According to a story from GlobeNewswire, the biotechnology company Galecto, Inc., has recently published the results from its phase 2a clinical trial. This study was testing the company’s experimental therapy GB0139 as a treatment for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF), a rare lung disease. The findings were first published in the European Respiratory Journal. The treatment appeared to have a positive impact on several relevant disease biomarkers. 

About Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis

Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis is a deadly, chronic, progressive lung disease which is characterized by lung tissue scarring, leading to a decline in lung function over time. The cause of this disease is unknown. With that being said, there are a few risk factors that have been identified, such as smoking cigarettes, exposure to various dusts (metal, wood, stone, and coal dust), occupations related to farming, family history, and potentially certain viral infections. Symptoms include shortness of breath, a dry cough, a distinctive crackling sound detected with a stethoscope, oxygen deficiency in the blood, and clubbed digits. There are few treatment options that can have a significant impact on the progression of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. Treatment may include certain medications, pulmonary rehabilitation, oxygen therapy, and lung transplant. Early intervention can make a major difference in outcomes; five year survival rate is between 20 and 40 percent. To learn more about idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, click here.

Trial Findings

The treatment had a dose dependent impact on several relevant biomarkers, particularly YKL-40 and CCL-18, which are correlated with mortality and declines in lung function (forced vital capacity), respectively. Treatment with GB0139 also impacted Galectin-3, PDGF-B, and PAI-1. The strongest impact was measured in the cohort receiving a 10 mg dose of the medication. With the encouraging results, the investigation of GB0139 is continuing in a phase 2b/3 clinical trial that will include a total of 450 patients. The fact that the treatment was able to bring down multiple biomarkers at once is an encouraging sign.

About GB0139

GB0139 is classified as an inhaled small molecule galectin-3 inhibitor, which is a protein linked to fibrosis (scarring). It has earned Orphan Drug designation from both the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the European Medicines Agency (EMA) for the treatment of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.

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