Metabolic eyes human trials for experimental osteoarthritis treatment

By Tim Dean
Wednesday, 06 February, 2013

A positive result from an animal trial of Calzada (ASX:CZD) subsidiary Metabolic Pharmaceuticals’ osteoarthritis treatment could lead to phase II human trials beginning soon.

Metabolic Pharmaceuticals, a subsidiary of Calzada (ASX:CZD), is looking at moving its osteoarthritis treatment to phase II human trials following a positive result from an animal trial.

The trial was conducted in Korea, led by Dr Dong Rak Kwon of the Daegu Catholic University Medical Center and used a rabbit model of osteoarthritis.

The rabbits were given an intra-articular injection of the experimental peptide AOD9604, which was found to have a positive effect on cartilage and joint tissue repair.

Combining the peptide with hyaluronic acid was found to have an even greater beneficial effect.

No adverse reactions were found, which has prompted Metabolic to consider progressing AOD9604 to phase II human trials, which would obviate the need for a phase I safety trial.

“These results are exciting because they provide early-stage evidence in a rabbit model that AOD9604 may help to repair OA damaged tissue,” said Dr Kwon.

“AOD9604 appears to have retained the same beneficial effects as hGH in our rabbit model of collagenase-induced OA. We encourage Metabolic to further develop AOD9604 as a potential treatment for OA,” said Dr Kwon.

The company is considering AOD9604 to be a treatment for osteoarthritis in both humans and pets.

AOD9604 is a small 16 amino acid peptide that is modelled on one active segment of human growth hormone. It has a solid safety track record to date after six human clinical trials.

The peptide is also being sold as one of the key components of Phosphagenics’ cosmetic anticellulite cream, BodyShaper, for which Metabolic receives royalties.

Parent company Calzada dropped fractionally in Tuesday’s trading to reach 4.7c at close, although it is up 4.4% since Friday.

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