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Wed Apr 29, 2020, 08:01 AM

Algernon Pharmaceuticals in the spotlight with lead drug Ifenprodil as promising coronavirus therapy

Source: Proactive (The fact that two words were misspelled in the headline--which I fixed here--makes me worried about this source)
Uttara Choudhury
08:00 Wed 29 Apr 2020

The company has received the green light from the ministry of food and drug safety in South Korea for a Phase 2 clinical trial of Ifenprodil as a coronavirus (COVID-19) therapy


How does Ifenprodil work as a therapy for patients who experience respiratory complications?

Keep in mind that all of our data has been developed from animal models that mimic or match the human disease for which we are working to develop a treatment. In our initial research stages, we were investigating Ifenprodil for a disease of the lung called idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). We used a murine animal model that created fibrosis tissue/scarring conditions in the lungs of the mice that we were studying. Ifenprodil showed a dramatic reduction in fibrosis in the treated arm of the study. We also put Ifenprodil up against two leading human treatments and it outperformed these two drugs. This told us that the drug is active in the lung and is reducing the amount of fibrosis that can build making breathing more difficult and reducing the oxygenation capacity of the lung tissue.

An independent study of Ifenprodil in H5N1 infected mice showed that the drug reduced mortality by 40%, reduced the acute lung injury and inflammation that occurs in the lungs after being infected. H5N1 is far more lethal a form of flu than COVID-19 and so the data suggests that we may see a similar if not a stronger response in humans infected with a far less aggressive or lethal form of the flu, being COVID-19.

We believe that the mechanistic activity of the drug is lessening the inflammatory response called the cytokine storm and as a result can possibly reduce the duration and severity of a COVID-19 infection.

Read more here: https://www.proactiveinvestors.com/companies/news/918349/algeron-phrmaceuticals-in-the-spotlight-with-lead-drug-ifenprodil-as-promising-coronavirus-therapy-918349.html

About Ifenprodil

Ifenprodil is an inhibitor of the NMDA receptor,[1] specifically of GluN1 (glycine-binding NMDA receptor subunit 1) and GluN2B (glutamate-binding NMDA receptor subunit 2) subunits.[2] Additionally, ifenprodil inhibits GIRK channels, and interacts with alpha1 adrenergic, serotonin, and sigma receptors.[3]

NMDA receptors are multimeric ionotropic glutamate receptors composed of four subunits. GluN1 is obligate for functional expression. Other subunits include GluN2A, GluN2B, and the more recently discovered GluN3 subunits. Ifenprodil selectively blocks NMDA receptors containing the GluN2B subunit.


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