UNITY is a biotech company working on the removal of senescent cells, which accumulate with age, drive chronic inflammation, and spur various age-related diseases.
Founded by Drs. Jan van Deursen, Judith Campisi, Nathaniel David, and Daohong Zhou, the company has been developing senolytic therapies that can purge senescent cells from the body without harming healthy cells. The idea is that removing these problem cells could help us to maintain health and remain free of disease as we grow older.
The company’s lead candidate drug, UBX0101, is designed to treat musculoskeletal disease, with an initial focus on osteoarthritis. The candidate is a uniquely senolytic small molecule inhibitor of the MDM2/p53 protein interaction. Disruption of this protein interaction triggers the destruction of senescent cells.
It is also developing senolytic candidates for a variety of other age-related diseases, including diabetic retinopathy, diabetic macular edema, glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration, idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, systemic sclerosis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, kidney disease, and mitochondrial dysfunction.
An Investigational New Drug (IND) application was cleared by the U.S. FDA, and a Phase 1 clinical trial in osteoarthritis of the knee was initiated in the second quarter of 2018. Initial results from the Phase 1 study have proven positive with clinically significant improvements in patients with osteoarthritis.
The company will now proceed to Phase 2 studies where efficacy will be investigated.
Website: UNITY Biotechnology