Novel small molecule technology reverses life-threatening drug induced respiratory depression without diminishing pain relief
Charlottesville, VA, July 1, 2023. Atelerix Life Sciences Inc., a Charlottesville, Virginia-based biotechnology company focused on novel treatments for respiratory depression, today announced the signing of a license agreement with Case Western Reserve University for patented technology discovered at the University. The agreement grants Atelerix exclusive worldwide rights to develop and commercialize treatments based on a novel family of small molecules called active thiol-based compounds (ATBC’s) to prevent or reverse life threatening respiratory depression. The lead compound, ATLX – 0199, is first being targeted at reducing morbidity and mortality from drug-induced respiratory depression (DIRD) in the hospital setting.
The ATBC family and it’s lead compound ATLX- 0199 are the result of several decades of collaborative scientific discovery and research among the company’s three scientific co-founders – Stephen Lewis, PhD (Case Western Reserve University), Benjamin Gaston, MD, PhD (formerly at Case Western Reserve University and now at Indiana University), and James Bates, MD, PhD (University of Iowa). Dr. Bates now serves as Atelerix’s full time Chief Medical Officer, joining company co-founder and CEO David Kalergis, JD/MBA, on the founding management team. Development of the technology has been supported by funding and technical assistance from the National Institutes of Health, University Hospital Cleveland Medical Center’s Harrington Discovery Institute and the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute’s Catalyze Program.
“This licensed technology is an important component of our intellectual property portfolio, protecting the development of not only lead asset ATLX-0199, but an entire family of follow-on molecules with a variety of exciting potential clinical uses,” said David Kalergis, Atelerix co-founder and Chief Executive Officer.
Under the license agreement, Atelerix will make development and regulatory milestone payments to Case Western Reserve University and also pay tiered royalties on net sales of licensed products.
About Atelerix Life Sciences Atelerix Life Sciences Inc. is a biotech company developing a platform technology of new drugs targeting unmet medical needs. The lead compound for this novel drug family is ATLX-0199, a novel respiratory stimulant to address morbidity and death arising from drug-induced respiratory depression (DIRD) and related conditions. The current approach to drug-induced respiratory side effects from opioid or sedative medications is to administer an opioid receptor antagonist such as naloxone, which can help reverse certain life-threatening conditions. These, however, carry risks and limitations, particularly as they suppress pain control, making them problematic in the surgical and critical care settings. Atelerix’s solution is found within the new platform of small molecule drugs called active thiol-based compounds (ATBCs) targeted at safely preventing or reversing respiratory depression via a novel molecular pathway. Lead drug ATLX-0199 uses a novel mechanism of action to reverse DIRD while preserving vital pain relief and sedation, with first uses targeted in the perioperative and critical care hospital settings.