UK scientists from the Health Protection Agency (HPA) and Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) reported this week at the University of Southampton’s Wessex Life Sciences Alliance Conference the successful testing of Aradigm’s inhaled liposomal ciprofloxacin against Coxiella burnetii in a mouse model of this virulent infection. This work was conducted as part of the collaborative consortium that Aradigm Corporation formed with HPA and Dstl to evaluate the efficacy of Aradigm’s inhaled liposomal ciprofloxacin against high threat microbial agents.
Coxiella burnetii is a Gram-negative intracellular bacterium and the causative agent of the disease Q fever. C. burnetii is endemic worldwide, infects a wide variety of animals and humans and has a low infectious dose by the inhalational route. Clinical presentation in man may lead to an acute infection with flu-like symptoms, or a chronic life-threatening disease. A recent epidemic of Q fever in humans took place in the Netherlands in 2009, with 2357 reported cases and 6 deaths. Current oral antibiotic treatment of Q fever can be lengthy and complex.
In the experiments reported by the UK scientists, mice that were infected with C. burnetii via inhalation and treated 24 hours later with twice-daily oral ciprofloxacin continuing for 6 additional days, or infected drug-free control-treated animals that had the same treatment schedule, lost almost 20% of body weight by day 7 and exhibited clinical signs of the disease. In contrast, infected mice treated 24 hours later with once-daily lung-delivered liposomal ciprofloxacin continuing for 6 additional days, were significantly protected against weight loss and showed no clinical signs of disease throughout the 14-day duration of the study.
“We are very excited about these most recent successful results with our formulation in another problematic lung infection. The Dstl team had previously demonstrated that a single dose of our inhaled liposomal ciprofloxacin protects animals against lethal doses of inhaled tularemia infection– another microbial threat. Inhaled liposomal ciprofloxacin could become a very useful broad-spectrum prophylaxis and treatment for a variety of severe respiratory infections,” said Igor Gonda, Aradigm’s president and chief executive officer.
About inhaled ciprofloxacin (Pulmaquin™ and Lipoquin™)
Ciprofloxacin is a widely prescribed antibiotic to treat infections of the lung frequently experienced by cystic fibrosis (CF) and non-cystic fibrosis bronchiectasis (BE) patients. It is often preferred because of its broad-spectrum anti-bacterial action. The available oral and intravenous formulations of the drug are used to treat episodes of acute exacerbations of lung infections in CF patients. The Company’s once-a-day novel inhaled formulations of ciprofloxacin are encapsulated in liposomes, allowing for a sustained release of the drug within the lung and improving airway tolerability. The formulations are to be used for chronic maintenance therapy as they are expected to achieve higher antibiotic concentration at the site of infection and relatively low systemic antibiotic concentrations to minimize side-effects. Lipoquin is a liposomal formulation of ciprofloxacin. Pulmaquin is a dual release formulation that is a mixture of Lipoquin with unencapsulated ciprofloxacin. Pulmaquin has been tested extensively in preclinical tests, as well as in the ORBIT-2 Phase 2b bronchiectasis study in which outstanding antimicrobial activity coupled with good safety and tolerability was found, and, most importantly, the positive impact on prevention of exacerbations compared to placebo was also observed. The Company previously reported positive results in Phase 2a studies of 22 CF patients and 36 BE patients who received Lipoquin once-a-day for 2 (CF) or 4 (BE) weeks, respectively. Additionally, Aradigm is developing these formulations as a potential medication for the prevention and treatment of high threat and bioterrorism infections, such as inhaled anthrax, tularemia and Q fever. Aradigm has been granted orphan drug designation for liposomal ciprofloxacin for cystic fibrosis in the U.S. and the E.U., and for the combination of liposomal ciprofloxacin and free ciprofloxacin for BE in the U.S.
Aradigm is an emerging specialty pharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of a portfolio of drugs delivered by inhalation for the treatment of severe respiratory diseases by pulmonologists. The Company has product candidates addressing the treatment of bronchiectasis, cystic fibrosis, inhalation tularemia and anthrax infections, and smoking cessation.
More information about Aradigm can be found at www.aradigm.com.
Except for the historical information contained herein, this news release contains forward-looking statements that involve risk and uncertainties, including the ability of results in animal models to predict efficacy in humans, as well as the other risks detailed from time to time in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), including the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2011 filed with the SEC on March 28, 2012, and the Company’s Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q.
Aradigm, Pulmaquin, Lipoquin and the Aradigm Logo are registered trademarks of Aradigm Corporation.
Nancy Pecota, 510-265-8800
Chief Financial Officer
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