Evotec Announces Initiation of Phase I Clinic Trial with EVT 101

Hamburg, Germany | Oxford, UK - Evotec AG (Frankfurt Stock Exchange: EVT, TecDAX 30) today announced initiation of a Phase I study with EVT 101, its  NR2B subtype selective NMDA receptor antagonist for the potential treatment of Alzheimer's disease, neuropathic pain and Parkinson's disease. EVT 101 is now Evotec's second clinical programme and the first to advance from internal preclinical testing.
 
The study is a double-blind, placebo-controlled Phase I study evaluating the safety, tolerability and pharmacokinetics of EVT 101 in young and elderly healthy volunteers.
 
Dr John Kemp, Executive Vice President R&D Pharmaceuticals Division at Evotec, commented: "Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and neuropathic pain remain major unmet medical needs with only limited treatment options currently available. EVT 101 is the only publicly described orally active NR2B subtype selective antagonist to have entered clinical testing and, as such, represents a new opportunity to deliver novel therapeutic approaches through significant inhibition of this important NMDA receptor system. This has not previously been possible because of the adverse effects associated with non-selective NMDA receptor blockade.  Preclinical and clinical evidence indicates that this selectivity leads to superior efficacy and safety as compared to non-selective NMDA antagonists.  We are very excited about the potential of EVT 101 to improve the lives of those who suffer from Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and neuropathic pain."
 
 
Notes to the editor
 
About EVT 101
EVT 101 is being developed for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and neuropathic pain. It is a highly potent and selective antagonist of NR2B subunit containing NMDA receptors. In preclinical studies, the compound shows strong efficacy combined with an improved side effect profile compared to non-selective NMDA receptor antagonists and has good oral bioavailability and in vivo pharmacokinetics.
 
NMDA background
Apart from their normal physiological role in nerve-to-nerve cell communication NMDA receptors are important players in certain pathological disease states such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, neuropathic pain states and epilepsy. The hypothesis is that when NMDA receptor over-activation is reduced in these conditions with an "antagonist", this positively impacts on the disease. Extensive studies over the last 15 years have indicated a potential for NMDA receptor antagonists in the treatment of these diseases. However, the clinical development of non-selective antagonists has been limited by unfavourable side-effects, such as hallucinations. In the early 1990's it was found that multiple NMDA receptor subtypes exist which contain different NR2(A-D) subunits. Compounds selectively targeting NR2B subunit-containing receptors retain many of the beneficial effects of earlier non-selective compounds but have much improved side effect profiles. Separating side effects from beneficial effects by selectively targeting the NR2B-subunit allows to dose higher and hence to potentially increase efficacy of the drug.

Contact: Anne Hennecke, Director, Investor Relations & Corporate Communications, Evotec AG, Phone: +49-40-56081-286, anne.hennecke@evotec.com
Contact: Anne Hennecke, Director, Investor Relations & Corporate Communications, Evotec AG, Phone: +49-40-56081-286, anne.hennecke@evotec.com



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