Retinoid-Acid Receptor-related Orphan Receptor gamma t (RORγt) Program

RORγt inverse agonists for the treatment of autoimmune diseases (Psoriasis Rheumatiod Arthritis and related)

RORγt is a highly attractive target for the treatment of autoimmune diseases like Psoriasis or Rheumatoid Arthritis – diseases for which no curative or at least satisfying treatment is available.

RORγt is controlling the differentiation of a major contributor of chronic inflammation in these diseases, the TH17 immune cells. Inhibition of RORγt has the potential to selectively suppress TH17 mediated chronic inflammation while leaving the remainder of the immune system intact. Phenex has discovered the worldwide first potent series of RORγt inhibitors, fully synthetic drug-like small molecules and plans to nominate a candidate for clinical development by the end of 2013.

Phenex RORγt compounds show strikingly selective effects in suppressing TH17 mediated rises in IL-17 and related cytokines while leaving the TH1 and TH2 mediated immune response intact. Thus, these RORγt compounds are not generally immune suppressive such as NSAIDs or most other immune therapies but offer the potential of selectively ablating the cause of the autoimmune reaction while leaving the important defense system against pathogens intact.

Thus, the identification of RORγt inhibitors opens up new avenues for the development of more selective medicines against autoimmune diseases that promise to have reduced side effects as opposed to currently available treatments.