Aqualung Therapeutics Corporation Receives NIH Grant

AQUALUNG THERAPEUTICS CORPORATION receives a $225,000 National Institutes of Health (NIH) (award number R41 HL147769-01) Grant to establish a novel panel of Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS) biomarkers (CRIT-ICU Panel) that stratifies subjects at risk for ARDS into high and low mortality sub-groups.

In June 2019, Aqualung was awarded an NIH FASTTRACK R41/42 award to support mid and late stage development of a novel therapeutic, eNamptorTM mAb, for patients with acute respiratory failure due to trauma and infection. This new NIH grant now allows Aqualung to further risk stratify patients who are at risk for ARDS and also determine who may respond to newer therapies, such as eNamptorTM.

Aqualung is striving to develop a quantitative platform to allow assessment of validated biomarkers upon patient entry into the emergency room or intensive care units. Dr. Joe G.N. “Skip” Garcia states that “our preliminary ARDS biomarker data are strong and include 11 ARDS relevant plasma biomarkers. We will aim to apply standard biostatistical approaches as well as a novel neural network of artificial intelligence to help identify an optimal plasma derived biomarker panel which predicts ICU mortality. The goal of this CRIT-ICU panel is to identify patients at risk for ARDS and lead to the development of a true Point of Care test to accelerate clinical trial stratification strategies, and the development of innovative ARDS therapeutics to reduce mortality in this devastating syndrome.”

Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome is a vexing condition with a mortality rate in the United States that approaches 40%. Aqualung believes that if there is a better way to predict who can be a responder to some of the newer therapies, this can not only accelerate the development pathway, but also be a better predictor of patient outcomes in upcoming clinical trials. We are pleased to see that the NIH also agrees with the importance of developing a biomarker panel for this patient condition.

About Aqualung Therapeutics Corporation

Aqualung is an early stage biotech company developing immune-focused therapeutic antibodies for patients suffering from disorders characterized by acute and chronic lung and systemic inflammation.  Founded in 2011 and led by a physician scientist, Aqualung’s science-driven approaches led them to the identification of nicotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase (NAMPT) and other key proteins expressed in both acute and chronic lung inflammatory diseases.  The pipeline of ALT is designed to target a range of diseases, including ARDS, ventilator- and radiation-induced lung injury, prostate cancer, pulmonary hypertension and pulmonary fibrosis.  These conditions all exhibit a significant unmet medical need with significant morbidity and mortality.


Aqualung Therapeutics Corporation
Tel: +1-(312) 618-7337
Joe GN “Skip” Garcia, MD, CEO & Founder

Posted in AZBio News.