Acceleron Pharma, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company developing novel therapeutics that modulate the growth of cells and tissues including muscle, bone, fat, red blood cells and the vasculature, today announced it has been awarded a $1.5 million grant from the Muscular Dystrophy Association to support clinical studies of ACE-031 in Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD), a disabling neuromuscular disease in which patients experience a progressive loss of muscle mass and strength. ACE-031 is an investigational protein therapeutic designed to build muscle and increase strength by blocking proteins that inhibit muscle growth and strength.
"We are honored to be recognized and supported by the Muscular Dystrophy Association as we work collectively to develop promising therapies for the treatment of patients with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy," said John Knopf, PhD, CEO of Acceleron. "This award along with our collaboration with Shire brings together the resources of several committed groups to evaluate the therapeutic potential of ACE-031 in DMD."
"Having invested more than $164 million on DMD-related research, MDA is eager to help Acceleron advance the clinical trial work needed to determine optimal doses of ACE-031 in terms of safety and pharmacodynamic activity," said R. Rodney Howell, M.D., Chairman of the MDA Board of Directors.
The MDA grant, awarded through the Association's Venture Philanthropy Program (MVP), will support ongoing clinical studies of ACE-031 in boys with DMD. The new investment will enable Acceleron to gather safe dosing and pharmcodynamic activity information vital to future studies of ACE-031. For more information on these ongoing studies, visit clinicaltrials.gov and query study identifiers NCT01099761 and NCT01239758.
"MDA is pleased to support Acceleron's efforts in the fight against Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy," said Valerie Cwik, M.D., MDA Executive Vice President - Research and Medical Director. "Our strategic investment should help Acceleron expedite the next phase of ACE-031 human clinical trials."
Source: Muscular Dystrophy Association