DesignMedix is a clinical stage drug discovery and development company focused on overcoming drug resistance in infectious disease. The company’s lead product is a potential cure for malaria designed to overcome the world-wide problem of drug resistance. DesignMedix continues to develop this product in a cost-effective manner, leveraging modest private investment with significant non-dilutive funding.
Malaria is one of the world’s deadliest diseases. It infects over 200 million people each year, and kills over 400,000, mostly children under the age of five. All currently available malaria drugs have shown resistance somewhere in the world, are expensive, and/or cannot be used in all patient groups.
Addressing all these problems, DesignMedix malaria drug candidate DM1157 has been shown to kill drug-resistant malaria parasite in blood samples drawn from hundreds of patients in Asia and Africa. In over 200 clinical samples, there have been no failures. In laboratory tests, DM1157 continues to work in the face of prolonged attempts to induce drug resistance. In addition, DM1157 has a very low cost of goods and the potential to be safe for the key patient groups of pregnant women and children.
Phase I human clinical trials in healthy volunteers are ongoing and have already demonstrated oral bioavailability of DM1157; the drug can be taken orally and reach the needed site for treatment - the blood stream. DesignMedix supplied the drug product for this clinical trial, which is supported by the National Institutes of Health and conducted at Duke Clinical Research Institute.
DesignMedix’s drug candidates are covered by three US patents, as well as an issued patent in India (the site of most malaria drug manufacture). DM1157 has Orphan Drug status with the FDA and is eligible for a tradable Priority Review Voucher incentive designed to encourage development of drugs for neglected diseases. Recent Priority Review Vouchers have traded from $80 M - $120M.
In the malaria drug product market, competitors can become partners. The World Health Organization recommends combination therapy to reduce the growth of drug resistance. As partner drugs in current combination therapies continue to fail because of drug resistance, new partner drugs are needed. DM1157 has been developed to have the characteristics sought for such combinations. The company is in discussions for possible corporate partnerships for late-stage clinical development of DM1157.