GHENT, Belgium–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Confo Therapeutics today announced the establishment of its Medical Advisory Board (MAB). The MAB will provide external review and strategic advice for the company’s clinical development program including the future direction of CFTX-1554, Confo’s lead pre-clinical candidate in neuropathic pain.
The international MAB members contribute comprehensive clinical and translational expertise with strong backgrounds in various aspects of neuropathic pain, Confo’s initial focus area. The MAB will be chaired by Prof. Andrew Rice, Professor of Pain Research at Imperial College London, United Kingdom.
Paolo Vicini, Chief Development Officer of Confo Therapeutics, commented, “Establishing a Medical Advisory Board is an important step for our evolving organization as we continue developing into a clinical stage R&D company. We look forward to enhancing and building out our development strategy by applying the diverse skills and perspectives exemplified by our MAB members, especially as we move CFTX-1554 toward the clinic.”
Prof. Andrew Rice, Chair of Confo’s Medical Advisory Board added, “I am thrilled to chair Confo Therapeutics’ newly formed Medical Advisory Board as the company continues making strides toward developing compelling treatment options in an otherwise underserved indication. My colleagues and I are hopeful that the company’s work in neuropathic pain will ultimately provide innovative therapeutics for patients.”
“We are grateful to be working together with this powerhouse of globally recognized clinical scientists and pain specialists,” said Cedric Ververken, Chief Executive Officer of Confo Therapeutics. “Supported by this MAB, we are confident in our ability to rapidly execute on our shared mission of building a strong pipeline of high-value GPCR modulators derived from our pioneering drug discovery platform.”
The members of Confo Therapeutics’ MAB are listed below. Member biographies are also available on the Confo website.
Ralf Baron, MD, Head of the Department of Neurological Pain Research and Therapy, Department of Neurology, University of Kiel, Germany.
Dr. Baron’s research focuses on exploring the mechanisms behind the formation of nerve pain, as well as the treatment of neuropathic pain syndromes. He was involved in developing a mechanism-related phenotyping strategy for neuropathic pain patients.
Robert H. Dworkin, PhD, Professor of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine, Neurology, and Psychiatry, University of Rochester Medical Center, NY, USA.
Prof. Dworkin is the Director of the Analgesic, Anesthetic, and Addiction Clinical Trial Translations, Innovations, Opportunities, and Networks (ACTTION) public-private partnership with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. His major research interests include the methodologic aspects of analgesic clinical trials and the treatment and prevention of chronic neuropathic and musculoskeletal pain.
Nanna Brix Finnerup, DrMedSc, MD, Professor and Chair, Danish Pain Research Center, Department of Clinical Medicine, Aarhus University, Denmark.
Prof. Finnerup’s research on the pathophysiology and therapy of neuropathic pain includes central and peripheral neuropathic pain conditions, assessment of pain mechanisms and stratified clinical trials.
Nathaniel Katz, MD, Chief Scientific Officer, Analgesic Solutions, Wayland, MA, USA.
Dr. Katz has completed numerous clinical trials of treatments for pain, both industry-initiated and investigator-initiated, involving pharmaceuticals, non-pharmaceutical analgesics, and devices. He is widely regarded as a global expert in post herpetic neuralgia pain management. He chaired the Advisory Committee to the FDA’s pain division (2000-2004) and is currently the Chief Scientific Officer of WCG Analgesic Solutions.
Andrew S.C. Rice, MD, FRCP, FRCA, FFPMRCA, FFPMCAI (MAB Chairperson), Professor of Pain Research, Imperial College London, UK.
Prof. Rice is active in translational research and clinical practice in the field of neuropathic pain. Much of his current work focuses on the deep profiling and genotyping of cohorts of patients living with neuropathic pain.
Mark Versavel, MD, PhD, MBA, President at vZenium LLC, Boston, MA, USA.
Dr. Versavel has over 25 years of clinical development experience in neuropathic pain and in multiple neurology and psychiatry indications across the areas of clinical pharmacology, early and late phase clinical trials, and in the support of marketed products.
CFTX-1554 is Confo Therapeutics’ first product candidate in pre-clinical development and is designed to address peripheral neuropathic pain while avoiding centrally mediated side effects, such as addiction and sedation. The compound is a novel inhibitor of angiotensin II type 2 receptor, or AT2R, a clinically validated target for the treatment of neuropathic pain. Whereas clinical-stage compounds targeting AT2R have failed to progress due to side-effects and/or toxicity concerns, CFTX-1554 more efficiently interacts with the AT2R binding site, resulting in improved drug-like properties. Confo has initiated Phase I-enabling studies and aims to advance CFTX-1554 to clinical development upon successful completion of these studies.
About Confo Therapeutics
Confo Therapeutics’ unparalleled technology stabilizes functional conformations of GPCRs (G protein-coupled receptors) to uncover a wide range of previously inaccessible drug targets. This platform combined with the pharmacologic and biologic insight it provides, allows Confo to build a multi-indication pipeline of drug candidates with the vision of transforming therapeutic outcomes for patients with severe illnesses lacking disease-modifying treatments. Confo Therapeutics was spun out of Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) and VIB in 2015. Supported by international life-science focused investors and led by an experienced team of entrepreneurial professionals and scientists from successful biopharmaceutical companies, Confo Therapeutics benefits from the rich scientific and innovative ecosystem in Belgium.
For more information, visit www.confotherapeutics.com