Partnership with Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Therapeutics (CFFT)
ProQR and CFFT entered into a partnership in 2014 to develop QR-010 for people with CF due to the F508del mutation. The initial partnership included support for the Phase 1b trial as well as the NPD proof of concept study that reported positive results in 2016. Based on the results of the clinical trials of QR-010, ProQR and CFFT intend to expand the partnership to explore the inhaled oligonucleotide platform for stop-codon mutations (also called “Class I” mutations) in CFTR. Stop-codon mutations cannot be targeted with small molecule potentiator or corrector molecules, and therefore have a high unmet medical need. ProQR intends to target these mutations using its proprietary Axiomer® technology, which has shown compelling data in non-clinical studies, to repair the stop-codon mutations in the RNA, leading to removal of the premature stop-codon. Approximately 12,000 patients, accounting for 15% of CF patients in the western world, have a stop-codon mutation leading to a severe form of CF.
”The results of this Phase 1b trial support QR-010’s potential to be a meaningful therapy for people with cystic fibrosis,” said Daniel A. de Boer, Chief Executive Officer at ProQR. ”With these results in hand we are designing a path forward for the development of QR-010, either independently or with a potential partner. Furthermore we are looking forward to expanding our partnership with the CFFT to explore the inhaled oligonucleotide platform also for people that have CF due to stop-codon mutations.”
About the PQ-010-001 Trial
The Phase 1b study was a trial designed to assess safety, tolerability and pharmacokinetics of QR-010. A number of exploratory efficacy endpoints were assessed in the multiple dose groups. A total of 4 dose levels were studied: 6.25, 12.5, 25 and 50 mg of QR-010 in solution per dose administered via inhalation using the PARI eFlow® nebulizer. Subjects eligible to participate were males and females of 18 years and over with a ppFEV1 of =70% at time of inclusion, homozygous for the F508del mutation, and not taking CFTR modulator drugs. The study design planned to enroll 8 cohorts of 8 subjects (6 receiving QR-010, 2 receiving placebo). In cohorts 1-4, a single dose of QR-010 was administered, and in cohorts 5-8 twelve doses of QR-010 were administered over a 4-week period.
Technology for QR-010 in-licensed from Massachusetts General Hospital in 2012.
Partnership with the CFF established to develop QR-010 for patients with the F508del mutation.
In vitro proof of concept in three F508del CF assays.
In vivo proof of concept in two assays, including nasal potential difference (NPD).
Pre-clinical in vitro and in vivo proof of concept established for efficient inhaled delivery to the CF diseased lung in collaboration with the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
QR-010 granted fast-track status by the FDA and orphan drug designation from FDA and the European Commission.
Program received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme.
Clinical trial PQ-010-002 top-line data shows significant improvement of CFTR function as measured by NPD in subjects homozygous for the F508del mutation following topical administration of QR-010.
Grant of two key patents, protecting QR-010 in the US and Europe.
Preliminary top-line data from clinical trial PQ-010-001 shows QR-010 is detected in the blood after inhaled administration, was observed to be safe and well-tolerated and shows signals of efficacy.
Full data for PQ-010-001 will be presented at the NACFC (November 2-4, 2017).
Conference Call and Webcast Information
ProQR will host a conference call and webcast today at 5:00 PM Eastern Time (ET) or 11:00 PM Central European Time (CET). The conference call will be webcast live and a link to the webcast can be accessed through ProQR’s website (www.proqr.com) and in the “Investors” section under “Events and Presentations”. To ensure a timely connection, it is recommended that users register at least 15 minutes prior to the scheduled webcast. An archived webcast will be available on the company’s website. To participate in the conference call, please dial in 5-10 minutes prior to start time and reference Conference ID 8468989:
Country Toll Free Direct
US 1 877 280 2296 +1 646 254 3365
Netherlands 0800 020 2576 +31 (0) 20 713 2789
United Kingdom 0800 279 4977 +44 (0) 20 3427 1919
Germany 0800 589 2674 +49 (0) 69 2222 10620
Belgium 0800 58032 +32 (0) 2 400 3463
Switzerland 0800 345 603 +41 (0) 44 580 7214
France 0805 631 580 +33 (0) 1 7677 2222
QR-010 is a first-in-class RNA-based oligonucleotide designed to address the underlying cause of the disease by targeting the mRNA in CF patients that have the F508del mutation. The technology was exclusively licensed from Massachusetts General Hospital. The F508del mutation results in the production of a misfolded CFTR protein that does not function normally. QR-010 is a single agent designed to bind to the defective CFTR mRNA and to restore CFTR function. QR-010 is designed to be self-administered via an optimized eFlow® Nebulizer (PARI Pharma GmbH). eFlow® is a small, handheld aerosol delivery device which nebulizes QR-010 into a mist inhaled directly into the lungs. QR-010 has been granted orphan drug designation in the United States and the European Union and fast-track status by the FDA. The QR-010 project received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 633545.
About Cystic Fibrosis
Cystic fibrosis (CF) is the most common fatal inherited disease in the Western world and affects over 75,000 patients worldwide. In people with CF, a defective CFTR gene causes a thick buildup of mucus in the lungs, pancreas and other organs. In the lungs, the mucus clogs the airways and traps bacteria leading to infections, extensive lung damage and eventually, respiratory failure. There is no cure for CF. Disease manifestations lead to a shortened life expectancy with a median age of death of 30 years. Although over 1,900 CF-causing gene mutations have been identified, approximately 85% of all CF patients are affected by the F508del mutation. Among all CF patients, approximately 50% are homozygous for the F508del mutation.