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Research Published in Nature Medicine Shows Disruption of Chemokine Interactions Inhibits Atherosclerosis in Mice
Date:1/5/2009

San Diego-Based Carolus Therapeutics Focuses on Discovery and Development of Anti-Inflammatory Drugs Based on Collaborators' Findings at RWTH Aachen University in Germany

SAN DIEGO, Jan. 5 /PRNewswire/ -- Research published in Nature Medicine shows that the disruption of the interactions between two small signaling proteins called chemokines by a highly potent drug-like peptide inhibits the development of atherosclerosis in mice. San Diego-based Carolus Therapeutics Inc., which has in-licensed technology based on these and other findings of collaborators at RWTH Aachen University in Aachen, Germany, is focused on the discovery and development of drugs for the treatment of atherosclerosis and other disorders triggered by acute and chronic inflammation.

In their report, which was published online yesterday, RWTH Aachen University researchers demonstrated in a mouse model that the formation of heteromers of the chemokines platelet factor-4 (PF4, also known as CXCL4) and RANTES (CCL5) plays a regulatory role in the development of atherosclerosis. The scientists also showed that peptides designed to disrupt the formation of PF4-RANTES heteromers inhibited the development of atherosclerosis in mice that had a genetic propensity to develop the disease. (Koenen et al., Nature Med, 2009)

"Disrupting interactions between PF4 and RANTES is a novel approach to targeting inflammation that may lead to a new class of medications for the treatment of a variety of chronic and acute inflammatory diseases," said Jay Lichter, Ph.D., CEO of Carolus Therapeutics. "This approach could help to meet the unmet need for anti-inflammatory therapeutics for chronic diseases such as atherosclerosis, autoimmune diseases, rheumatoid arthritis, sepsis, asthma and multiple sclerosis."

PF4 and RANTES are chemokines that are secreted by platelets. Heteromerization of PF4 and RANTES results in recruitment of monoc
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SOURCE Carolus Therapeutics Inc.
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