Pharma R&D Today
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Start-Up Spotlight: Can-Fite BioPharma
Posted on December 16th, 2016 by Betsy Davis in Pharma R&D
“Safety first” could be the motto of drug development company Can-Fite BioPharma, based in Israel. Dr. Sari Fishman, Director of Business Development, tells us about Can-Fite’s drug candidates, which effectively treat conditions as varied as cancer and arthritis while maintaining a strong safety profile.
What does your company do?
Can-Fite BioPharma Ltd. (NYSE MKT: CANF) is an advanced clinical stage drug development company with a platform technology that addresses multi-billion dollar markets in the treatment of cancer, inflammatory diseases, and sexual dysfunction. The company’s lead drug candidate, Piclidenoson (formerly known as CF101), is scheduled to enter Phase III trials in 2016 for two indications, rheumatoid arthritis and psoriasis. Piclidenoson has been out-licensed in Korea and Canada, with $10 million received to date. Can-Fite’s liver cancer drug CF102 is in Phase II trials for patients with advanced liver cancer and is slated to enter Phase II for the treatment for non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). CF602, the company’s third drug candidate, has shown efficacy in the treatment of erectile dysfunction in preclinical studies and is being prepared for an IND submission to the FDA and a Phase I trial. The company’s drug candidates have an excellent safety profile with experience in over 1,000 patients in clinical studies to date. Can-Fite’s intellectual property portfolio consists of 120 patents issued and pending.
Describe what the company aims to achieve.
Can-Fite’s platform technology is based on the finding that the Gi protein-coupled A3 adenosine receptor (A3AR) is over-expressed in inflammatory and cancer cells. The company’s proprietary compounds target and bind with A3AR and induce specific cell death of cancer and inflammatory cells. This creates a targeted anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory effect, while leaving normal cells unharmed. A3AR is also a biological predictive marker which helps to identify individual patients’ responsiveness to Can-Fite’s drugs.
Why is this research so important?
The company develops drugs with a high specificity to a target present on inflammatory and cancer but not normal cells. This specificity grants the drugs an excellent safety profile, already proven in more than 1,000 patients. Efficacy has been proved in Phase II clinical studies in rheumatoid arthritis and psoriasis. These unique drug characteristics create a promise for patients to be treated chronically with safe and efficacious drugs.
What impact will this have?
On the market, one can find only drugs which are indeed efficacious but not safe. Can-Fite’s drugs have both and will benefit patients.
What will the next steps for Can-Fite be?
Phase III clinical studies and drugs registration with agencies.
How does everyone working at the company feel about its progress?
Can-Fite employees, including scientists and drug development people, believe in the technology and are eager to bring the drugs to patients.
Are you currently looking for partners?
We are looking for pharmaceutical partners that will help us to market the drugs globally.
To get in contact with Dr. Sari Fishman, or to follow Can-Fite:
All opinions shared in this post are the author’s own.
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