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Akari's Lead Candidate Found Safe, Effective In Treating Eye Inflammation

Shanthi Rexaline

Shares of Akari Therapeutics PLC (NASDAQ: AKTX) — a thinly traded nano-cap biotech focusing on therapies for autoimmune and inflammatory diseases — were soaring Wednesday. 

What Happened

Akari announced positive results for Part A of a Phase 1/2 study dubbed TRACKER that evaluated the safety and efficacy of its topical nomacopan in moderate to severe atopic keratoconjunctivitis.

The Part A portion of the midstage study evaluated three patients who were administered nomacopan eye drops twice daily in addition to cyclosporin, the standard of care, for up to 56 days.

The nomacopan drops were found to be comfortable and well-tolerated throughout the trial of three patients, with no serious adverse events reported.

The secondary objective of efficacy was assessed using a standard composite scoring system. The company noted an overall improvement in clinical scores of 55%, with a 62% improvement in symptoms such as discomfort and itching and a 52% improvement in signs such as conjunctival redness and microscopic damage to the corneal surface.

Why It's Important

Atopic keratoconjunctivitis is a serious corneal and eye surface disease which ultimately leads to visual impairment.

No drug has been approved for the disease. The standard of care is based on topical and immunosuppression, does not prevent progression of the disease and causes pain and irritation, according to Akari. 

What's Next

Based on the results of the Part B portion of the study, the independent safety committee has given its nod for proceeding with the Part B study, for which enrollment has begun.

Akari shares were up 6.53% at $2.28 at the time of publication Wednesday. 

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