Satellos Bioscience is a drug discovery company developing therapeutics to regenerate muscle as a new approach to treating disease conditions like Duchenne muscular dystrophy. They have recently announced that they have created, prioritized and advanced novel small molecule drug candidates into further preclinical studies.
The Company’s compounds have been designed to be potent and selective inhibitors of a particular kinase protein in the Notch pathway, which the company is calling K9 for reasons of confidentiality. The Company’s scientists have discovered that inhibiting this target enables the modulation of the muscle stem cell division and regeneration process in its lead disease indication, Duchenne muscular dystrophy (“Duchenne”).
“The K9 drug target is quite well understood pharmaceutically, in a completely unrelated therapeutic area to Duchenne where it has been independently studied in both phase 1 and phase 2 clinical studies. That this target has been assessed in another setting without apparent signs of obvious safety concerns is encouraging to us as this may help de-risk our program.
Our scientific team has moved quickly and inventively to generate these potent and selective inhibitors of K9, consistent with our timelines. I am proud of their progress in advancing small molecule drug candidates which can regenerate muscle as a treatment for people living with Duchenne.”Frank Gleeson, President and CEO of Satellos
Defeat Duchenne Canada is proud to fund Dr. Michael Rudnicki, the scientific founder at Satellos, who discovered and has shown how muscle stem cells regulate muscle repair and growth throughout life. He has shown how defects in a process known as stem cell “polarity,” which controls how muscle stem cells divide to create muscle progenitor cells, lead to a failure of muscle regeneration in Duchenne and potentially other muscle disorders. As a result of this ongoing inability to produce sufficient numbers of new muscle cells, the muscles of people living with Duchenne are unable to keep up with and repair the continuous and accumulating damage their muscles experience.