Xiaoxi Lv, PhD | The Institute of Materia Medica, CAMS & PUMC; Fang Hua, PhD; Shuang Shang, PhD; Bo Li, PhD; Jing Jin, PhD
Competition Sponsor: Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences
Awardee Year: 2022
Pulmonary interstitial diseases refer to changes in the structure of the pulmonary interstitium caused by different insults. It is characterized by pulmonary interstitial inflammation in the early stage, and then evolves into pulmonary fibrosis (PF) and vascular remodeling, and up to two-thirds of patients with interstitial lung disease have fibrotic changes. The lack of related research has led to extremely limited options for anti-fibrosis drug treatment. PF is mainly treated by anti-fibrotic therapy, inhibition of inflammation, antioxidant therapy, and acid suppression therapy. There are only two FDA-approved drugs for the treatment of PF, pirfenidone and nintedanib. However, except for lung transplantation, existing drugs can only relieve the symptoms of PF but cannot reverse the fibrotic changes. At present, almost all anti-PF drugs are developed to inhibit the activation of fibroblasts and the inflammatory response. However, most patients with PF have already formed fibrotic change at the time of diagnosis. Therefore, it is urgent to develop drugs that can clear the collagen deposited in lung tissue. We previously developed an autophagy-activating polypeptide IMM-H029 that promotes the degradation of the collagen though autophagy pathway, which can effectively attenuate PF induced by various factors in many animal models with excellent safety. The purpose of this project is to complete the preclinical study of IMM-H029. The research and development of IMM-H029 not only fills an important gap in the field of PF drug treatment, but its combination with anti-inflammatory and traditional anti-fibrotic drugs will also bring new benefits to patients with PF.
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