BOSTON, Sept. 18 /PRNewswire/ -- Paratek Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
announced today the most advanced preclinical results of the Company's
Multiple Adaptation Response (MAR) inhibitor program. MAR proteins in
bacteria serve as the "master switch" controlling virulence and antibiotic
resistance. Paratek has shown that shutting down this switch disables
bacterial virulence and prevents bacteria from causing infection. Paratek
is developing MAR inhibitors that can prevent serious and life-threatening
bacterial infections in high-risk patients.
The results were reported in a "late breaker" poster presentation
titled, "A Novel Anti-Virulence Approach for Treatment of Pneumonia Caused
by Pseudomonas aeruginosa," at the 47th Interscience Conference on
Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (ICAAC) taking place in Chicago. The
findings demonstrated that small molecule agents which block the activity
of ExsA (a MAR protein) in Pseudomonas aeruginosa significantly reduced
bacterial virulence and were protective in an animal model from pneumonia.
Lead authors on the research are Michael P. Draper, Ph.D., Director of
Anti-Infective Drug Discovery at Paratek Pharmaceuticals, and Stuart B.
Levy, M.D., Chief Scientific Officer and Co-Founder of Paratek.
In addition, Paratek announced a newly released publication showing
efficacy of the Company's MAR inhibitors against E. coli in urinary tract
infection in another animal model of serious bacterial infection. The
article, titled, "Novel anti-infection agents: Small-molecule inhibitors of
bacterial transcription factors," is appearing in the current August 2007
issue of Bioorganic & Medicinal Chemistry Letters.
Dr. Levy commented, "We are very pleased with the progress of the MAR
program. We have shown proof of concept in E. coli, Yersinia and now
Pseudomonas, a gram-negative bacterium with increasing multi-drug
resistance which is a leading cause of hospital-acquired infections and
death. We have also supported previous evidence that MAR inhibitors act as
non-antibacterial compounds, which means they do not inhibit growth of
bacteria and should therefore be less likely to foster resistance
development. This new paradigm in infectious diseases will be very useful
in preventing a broad range of critical bacterial infections."
Thomas J. Bigger, President and CEO of Paratek Pharmaceuticals, stated,
"Paratek's MAR program has the potential to reshape the course of existing
antibiotics and create a new standard in anti-infective therapy by directly
preventing infection. The Company plans to achieve further proof of concept
and enter into IND-enabling preclinical studies in 2009."
About the MAR Proteins
MAR proteins such as ExsA and its homologues in other bacteria
constitute a novel "master switch" that controls the expression of multiple
other proteins involved in serious infections including those caused by
bacteria such as Escherichia coli, Yersinia, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa.
When activated, the MAR system initiates a number of bacterial survival and
defense mechanisms, including processes whereby bacteria establish
infections and develop resistance to a broad range of antibiotics and other
toxic substances. MAR inhibitors interfere with protein function,
specifically eliminating the synthesis of proteins controlling virulence,
and act as effective agents for preventing infection. MAR inhibitors are
also non-antibacterial and therefore, not under the same selection pressure
for multi-drug resistance as traditional antibiotics. Initial potential
applications include preventing and treating severe pulmonary infections in
ventilator-assisted patients, other nosocomial infections and recurrent
urinary tract infections.
About Paratek Pharmaceuticals
Paratek Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is engaged in the discovery and
commercialization of new therapeutics that treat serious and
life-threatening diseases, with a particular focus on the growing worldwide
problem of antibiotic resistance. Paratek is advancing novel compounds that
can circumvent or block bacterial resistance involving technology initially
developed by Paratek co-founder Dr. Stuart Levy's laboratory at Tufts
University School of Medicine, and licensed by Paratek. Paratek's lead
compound, PTK 0796, is a broad spectrum antibiotic derived from the
tetracycline class with oral and IV formulations that is being developed
for the treatment of the most common serious and hospital bacterial
infections, including those caused by resistant strains such as MRSA
(methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus). In addition to PTK 0796 and
its MAR inhibitor program Paratek is also developing community-targeted
broad-spectrum antibiotics and narrow-spectrum antibiotics to treat acne
and C. difficile associated-diarrhea (CDAD).
Outside the antibacterial therapeutic area, Paratek has also
established an effort to exploit its novel tetracycline derivatives and
their unique mechanism of action in selected inflammatory and
neurodegenerative conditions. Paratek has an active chemical synthesis
effort to produce novel and diverse small molecules, with the goal of
developing non-antibacterial compounds with improved activity in serious
inflammatory and neurodegenerative diseases based upon a growing body of
clinical research supporting this approach.
Paratek has active collaborations with Merck, MerckSerono,
Warner-Chilcott and FSMA to develop orally available small molecule drugs
for community bacterial infections, multiple sclerosis, acne & rosacea, and
spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), respectively. Paratek is privately held and
headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts, USA. For more information about
Paratek and its research and development initiatives, visit Paratek's
website at http://www.paratekpharm.com/.
SOURCE Paratek Pharmaceuticals, Inc.