Destiny Pharma receives award from the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation
Study to investigate potential of XF-73 to treat MRSA infection in people with cystic fibrosis
Brighton, United Kingdom – 12 July 2022 – Destiny Pharma plc (AIM: DEST), a clinical stage biotechnology company focused on the development of novel, hospital infection prevention and treatment products that address the global challenge of antimicrobial resistance (AMR), today announces it has received an award from the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. The research project will establish the potential of the Company’s proprietary XF-73 drug as a novel treatment for cystic fibrosis patients infected with methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). The project will have access to clinical isolates collected from people with cystic fibrosis and the work will be carried out by experienced researchers associated with the Foundation. Financial terms of the collaboration have not been disclosed.
Neil Clark, Chief Executive Officer of Destiny Pharma, stated: “We are very excited to carry out this project with the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. The tailored research will allow us to demonstrate the potential of XF-73 in alleviating the suffering of thousands of MRSA-infected cystic fibrosis patients and is another programme derived from our proprietary XF platform.”
Cystic fibrosis (CF) is a progressive, genetic disease that causes persistent lung infections and limits the ability to breathe. It is estimated that over 70,000 people worldwide are living with CF, with more than 30,000 in the US alone, and approximately 1,000 new cases diagnosed each year.
MRSA is becoming more common among the pathogenic bacteria that cause lung infections in CF patients, having a presence in about 25% of people with the disease.
MRSA is resistant to multiple antibiotics -- biofilms are thought to be involved and lung infections caused by the bacteria often become long-term3. MRSA produces several virulence factors and its presence in the respiratory tract is associated with significant lung damage and is a major cause of mortality. The ability to treat such MRSA infections effectively would therefore significantly help CF patients.
Destiny Pharma’s lead compound, XF-73, is being prepared for Phase 3 clinical development to prevent post-surgical Staphylococcal infections. To date, XF-73 has demonstrated in vitro to be active against many of the world’s most pathogenic bacteria as outlined in the WHO priority list4. XF-73 acts via an ultra-rapid action, which kills bacteria (including antibiotic resistant strains), leaving them unable to mount a resistance response, according to Professor MacLean, Oxford University.5 To date, no existing antibiotic resistance mechanism has been identified which confers resistance to XF-73. The spectrum of activity, the absence of an identified resistance mechanism and the ability to maintain its activity within biofilms puts XF-73 in a unique position to address important challenges posed by antimicrobial resistance (AMR).
5 R. Craig MacLean, Assessing the Potential for Staphylococcus aureus to Evolve Resistance to XF-73. Trends in Microbiology, (2020), 1812.