“This is a drug very specifically designed to inhibit cortisol production in the brain, and the essence of that is that persistently raised cortisol has been shown to be associated with the development, and the progression, of Alzheimer’s disease. So our hypothesis is, if you inhibit that cortisol production in the brain you can impact - hopefully improve, hopefully moderate, hopefully stop - the development of Alzheimer’s disease, and that’s where we’re up to now. We are undertaking a large international trial to test that hypothesis,” explains Ketelbey.
The biotech company recently underwent an independent interim analysis of its phase II clinical trial for Xanamem in Alzheimer’s disease, named XanADu, which received the positive recommendation of continuation without modification.
Furthermore, Actinogen Medical recently attracted $17 million in funding from renowned institutional investors including Biotechnology Value Fund, Platinum Investment Management Limited and Australian Ethical Investment. Ketelbey describes it as, “a huge endorsement and validation of the trial, of the business, of the potential, and I guess of the management and science that sits behind it.”
This money will be invested in research into potential new indications for Xanamem. “There is a raft of additional opportunities that present themselves, so in a way Xanamem is a pipeline in a product. Alzheimer’s is the major target that we’re going for, but there’s depression, schizophrenia, Parkinson’s disease, epilepsy, potentially PTSD, post myocardial infarction, a whole raft of additional indications that we’ve been presented with. Probably the most developed and promising one is in diabetes... so as you can see it’s a broad platform of opportunities,” says Ketelbey.
Actinogen Medical will be presenting at BIO International in Boston, USA, next week.