Psoriasis is a highly challenging, autoimmune disorder of the skin with a global prevalence ranging between 0.09% to 11.14 %. Although evidence supports the role of the immune system and genetic predisposition in psoriasis, the causes still remain unclear. It can occur equally in both males and females, affecting all age groups, most commonly between 50-69 years of age. Psoriasis affects >120 million worldwide, with no cure till date.
Due to its highly challenging nature, treatment of Psoriasis has been expanding over the years with positive signs of growth and advancement. There are several noticeable pharmaceutical companies in the race to develop advanced treatment modalities for Psoriasis. The global psoriasis treatment market reached $20.19 billion in 2019 and is estimated to hit $40.58 billion by 2027.
Some of these include Mylan, Pfizer, Arcutis Biotherapeutic, Amgen, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Can-Fite Biopharma, Santalis Pharmaceuticals, Sienna Pharmaceuticals, MetrioPharm etc. The current Psoriasis pipeline has more than 20 drugs in the registration or preregistration phase, around 90 molecules in different clinical trial phases and around 15 drugs in their pre-clinical phase. Majority of these psoriasis pipeline drugs are biologics and oral drug candidates. The mechanisms of actions involved in these drugs are Immunosuppressing action, inhibition of interleukin-12, interleukin-23, TNF-alpha, IL-17F proteins and Aryl Hydrocarbon receptor antagonists.
There is significant escalation in the understanding and application of peptides as therapeutics for skin conditions. Specifically, peptides with antimicrobial properties and those associated with inflammatory processes serve as potential therapeutic agents for conditions like psoriasis. Over the past decade there has been a great increase in progression and appreciation of peptide drug discovery by the pharmaceutical industry as enhanced biological therapeutics or even alternatives for small molecules. They have a diverse functional capability with several achievable modifications for challenging and complex tasks.
Researchers carried out in vivo studies to examine the efficacy of peptides in reducing the symptoms induced by psoriasis. Management of psoriasis with anti-TNF-alpha antibodies can aggravate inflammatory lesions in the case of psoriasis, however alternative therapies targeting other signalling pathways with blockage of pro inflammatory cytokines have shown positive results in psoriasis, as observed with potential peptides exhibiting modulatory effects on anti- angiogenic function and down regulation of inflammatory IL-17 and IL-23.
What makes ISSAR’S IS-217 (Anti-Psoriatic molecule) unique?
ISSAR is a Pioneer in R&D and commercialization of innovative synthetic peptide-based therapeutics with Expertise in Solid Phase Peptide Synthesis (SPPS).
ISSAR’S IS-217 is a novel, non-biological, non-steroidal, synthetic, decapeptide anti-psoriatic molecule with a dual mechanism of action: Anti-angiogenic and anti-inflammatory. IS-217 targets the Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) and IL 17/23. It binds to the VEGF, thereby blocking the binding of VEGF to its receptor (VEGFR2), exhibiting anti-angiogenesis and anti-inflammatory action.
The molecule is currently developed for both systemic and topical administration with promising preclinical efficacy in Psoriasis models. The results of the preclinical studies demonstrated that IS- 217 targets the VEGFR-2 by down regulating p38 kinases and pro-inflammatory IL-23 and IL-17 secretion. ISSAR has completed majority of the IND-enabling studies and targeted IND applications for IS-217 in 2020.
ISSAR is hoping to change the lives of many with their first in class drug for psoriasis with proven scientific expertise and robust data on synthesis and formulation to support the manufacturing and scaling process.