Developmental stage biopharmaceutical company Parion Sciences recently announced that the National Institutes of Health‘s grants over the next 5 years in support of pulmonary research programs using their novel pipeline treatments will reach a total of about $15.6 million. These grants have gone to the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and the University of Colorado, Denver, in support of their collaborative research with Parion and to facilitate Investigational New Drug (IND) applications for the company’s proprietary formulas.
UNC-CH is the first grant recipient during the NIH’s initial year of funding. They received a Centers for Advanced Diagnostics and Experimental Therapeutics in Lung Disease (CADET) grant worth $1.46 million ($7.7 million total) to conduct a preclinical study on the application of Parion’s mucolytic agents in COPD and cystic fibrosis. UCD received another CADET grant worth $1.52 million initially ($7.9 million total) to fund the company’s products’ application in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). These 5-year grants will be renewed bi-annually, and will be subject for yearly reviews.
“As a science driven company, it is gratifying to partner with such premier academic institutions like UNC and UCD to successfully secure the competitive NIH Awards,” said Paul Boucher, President, Parion Sciences. “The NIH support and the combined expertise of the collaborations boost our innovative mucolytic program as we advance through the pre-clinical stages.”
Parion Sciences is dedicated to discovering and developing safer and more effective mucolytic solutions for diseases that cause mucosal surface defense deficiencies such as COPD, IPF, and CF. Cystic Fibrosis, a designated orphan disease, is estimated to affect at least 30,000 children and adults in America, and 70,000 across the world. Every year, 1,000 CF diagnoses are made in the US, and there is still no known cure. While the median age of survival for CF has made significant improvement since the 1950s, allowing patients to live well into their 40s, there remains a growing unmet need for better solutions.
In other cystic fibrosis news, an Australia-based specialist pharmaceutical company, Pharmaxis, has just opened participant recruitment for an international long-term Phase 3 clinical trial for their lead pipeline product for cystic fibrosis, Bronchitol® (mannitol), which works to draw water into lung mucosa and help water down stubborn mucus buildup to facilitate physiotherapy and airway clearance.