BioLineRx (NASDAQ: BLRX)(TASE: BLRX), a biopharmaceutical development company, announced the publication of pre-clinical results demonstrating that BL-7010, an orally available treatment for celiac disease, reduces gluten toxicity (the negative effect of gluten on the patient's body). The research was published in the February edition of Gastroenterology.
The findings indicate that BL-7010 (previously called P(HEMA-co-SS)) reduces digestion of wheat gluten, thereby decreasing its toxicity. In addition, BL-7010 attenuates the immune response to gluten in rodents and prevents gluten-induced pathological damage to the small intestine. BL-7010 was not absorbed systemically, indicating its safety as a gluten-neutralizing substance. These data demonstrate that BL-7010 has the potential to be an effective adjunctive therapy to the gluten-free diet, to prevent or reduce gluten-induced disorders in humans.
"Celiac disease is a highly prevalent autoimmune disease, which occurs in genetically predisposed individuals who are exposed to gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley and rye," said Dr. Kinneret Savitsky, CEO of BioLineRx. "Currently, there is no cure or pharmacological treatment for the disease, and treatment consists of adhering to a life-long, strict, gluten-free diet, which is extremely hard to maintain and is not effective in all cases. BL-7010 may attenuate the immune response to gluten and reduce subsequent damage to the small intestine. This compound, therefore, has the potential to be an effective adjunctive pharmacological therapy to improve the quality of life for millions of celiac disease patients."