CytoDyn Inc. (CYDY) is a Vancouver, Washington-based biotechnology company engaged in the clinical development and potential commercialization of humanized monoclonal antibodies for the treatment and prevention of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infection.
Monoclonal antibodies – soluble proteins produced by the body in response to infections from bacteria, viruses and other pathogens – have become one of the fastest expanding opportunities in the biotech/pharma sector. CytoDyn’s lead drug candidate is PRO 140, one of the leading monoclonal antibodies under development for HIV infection.
PRO 140 belongs to a new class of HIV/AIDS therapeutics intended to protect healthy cells from viral infection. The candidate has been used in more than 200 HIV-infected patients in placebo-controlled and open label FDA-approved clinical trials; has been the subject of seven clinical trials, each demonstrating efficacy by significantly reducing or controlling HIV viral load in human test subjects; and is designated a “fast track” product candidate by the FDA.
The PRO 140 antibody appears to be a powerful antiviral agent leading to potentially hardly any side effects or toxicity and less frequent dosing requirements, as compared to daily drug therapies currently in use. CytoDyn has received FDA clearance for and currently has two Phase 3 clinical trials underway. The company’s first Phase 3 trial is a pivotal trial with PRO 140 in combination with current standard-of-care antiretroviral therapy (ART) for highly treatment-experienced patients with HIV. This 25-week trial involves only 30 patients with a primary endpoint of just one week of efficacy and the company expects to report primary endpoint results as early as the first quarter of 2017.
The company’s other Phase 3 trial is with PRO 140 as a single-agent maintenance therapy in virally suppressed subjects with HIV. This multicenter, open-label trial is now enrolling 300 patients prequalified with CCR5-tropic HIV-1 infection who are clinically stable on standard-of-care highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART). The objective of the trial is to assess the efficacy, safety and tolerability of PRO 140 as a long-acting, single-agent maintenance therapy for the chronic suppression of HIV. Patients enrolled in the trial will be shifted from daily HAART regimens to weekly PRO 140 subcutaneous injections for 48 weeks. This trial protocol is nearly a duplicate of the Phase 2b monotherapy trial, which is ongoing with an extension study that supports a group of patients who have maintained viral suppression for over two years and is continuing.
Additionally, the company has underway a Phase 2 trial to evaluate PRO 140 for Graft vs. Host Disease (GvHD) in a 100-day study involving 60 patients. GvHD is a life-threatening complication for cancer patients undergoing stem cell transplants. This trial will evaluate the safety and efficacy of PRO 140 for prophylaxis of acute GvHD in patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) or myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) undergoing allogeneic stem-cell transplantation.
CytoDyn operates under the guidance of a highly qualified management team and advisors with experience in a wide range of complementary skillsets, including business development, mechanical engineering, life sciences and biotech, manufacturing and clinical development, IP asset development, biologics, antibody drug conjugates, engineered tissue therapeutics, small molecule and radiopharmaceutical drugs and more. Additionally, CytoDyn has established relationships with world-class HIV experts who advise on the company’s trial designs.
- First self-administered antibody therapy for HIV in late-stage clinical trial
- Lead candidate has fast-track candidate designation, possibility for accelerated approval
- World-class HIV expert advisors and partnerships support highly experienced management team