Swiss Biotech Launches Amidst Hot Streak for Rare Autoimmune Disease

Swiss biotech Chord Therapeutics launched this week with a €13.7M Series A, becoming the latest company to tackle the rare condition neuromyelitis optica, for which three therapies have been approved in less than a year. 

Neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorders, previously also known as Devic disease, affect up to 2 in 100,000 people around the world. Those with the autoimmune condition endure severe nerve damage that impacts the optic nerves and spinal cord. Ninety percent of patients with this condition are women and many also have other autoimmune conditions. 

Until 2019 there were no approved treatments for neuromyelitis optica. That year, Alexion Pharmaceuticals’ Soliris, a monoclonal antibody targeting the complement protein C5, was approved for the treatment of this condition by both the FDA and the EMA. 

Since then, MedImmune spinout Viela Bio and Roche’s Chugai Pharmaceuticals have respectively seen their monoclonal antibodies, Uplizna and Enspryng, approved by the FDA this summer. 

While the approval of these drugs is undoubtedly an enormous breakthrough for patients with this painful condition, other companies are developing alternatives to these early treatment options to broaden clinician and patient options. 

“There is often no treatment or only a very limited choice of treatment options for rare diseases, and not all treatments work well for all patients, so the medical need is high,”  commented Chord Therapeutics’

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Published on Thu, 15 Oct 2020 15:13:03 +0000 and brought to you by nintex euros to canadian