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ChemoCentryx Initiates Phase 2 Clinical Trial of CCX354 for the Treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis
Date:12/16/2009

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., Dec. 16 /PRNewswire/ -- ChemoCentryx, Inc. today announced that it has begun enrolling patients in a Phase 2 clinical trial of CCX354, an orally-bioavailable, novel, small molecule drug designed to specifically target the CCR1 chemokine receptor for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA).

CCX354 is a highly potent and selective antagonist of CCR1, a chemokine receptor that drives the recruitment of immune cells, such as monocytes and macrophages, associated with the inflammation underlying certain autoimmune diseases, including RA. By selectively blocking the CCR1 receptor, CCX354 is designed to reduce the infiltration of inflammatory cells into the joints of RA patients and inhibiting the subsequent joint destruction while minimizing the potential for off-target effects, thus providing a wider therapeutic window than currently approved therapies. The high potency and selectivity of the molecule are expected to provide continuous receptor coverage throughout the dosing period which is thought to be critical for efficacy. Successful completion of single and multiple ascending dose Phase 1 studies in healthy volunteers showed that CCX354 was safe and well-tolerated.

"Initiation of a Phase 2 clinical development program for CCX354 marks yet another important milestone for ChemoCentryx and represents a unique opportunity to thoroughly evaluate a new mechanism of action for the potential treatment of rheumatoid arthritis," stated Thomas J. Schall, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of ChemoCentryx. "We believe our CCR1 antagonist is best-in-class, surpassing the properties of previous molecules in this space, particularly in its ability to continuously cover the disease target, the CCR1 receptor. This study builds on our recent clinical success of demonstrating efficacy for Traficet-EN(TM), a novel drug which targets another chemokine receptor, in patients suffering from Crohn's disease. We
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SOURCE ChemoCentryx, Inc.
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