Morphic Holding, Inc. (MORF)
First Day Turnover
We are a biopharmaceutical company applying our proprietary insights into integrins to discover and develop a pipeline of potentially first-in-class oral small-molecule integrin therapeutics. Integrins are a target class with multiple approved injectable blockbuster drugs for the treatment of serious chronic diseases, including autoimmune, cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, fibrosis and cancer. To date, no oral small-molecule integrin therapies have been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, or FDA.
Despite significant unsuccessful efforts, we believe tremendous untapped potential remains for us to develop oral integrin therapies. We created the Morphic integrin technology platform, or MInT Platform, by leveraging our unique understanding of integrin structure and biology to develop novel product candidates designed to achieve the potency, high selectivity and pharmaceutical properties required for oral administration. We are advancing our preclinical pipeline, including our lead wholly-owned program for a4b7-specific integrin inhibitors affecting inflammation into clinical development for the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease, or IBD.
We are also developing our most advanced product candidate, MORF-720, a selective oral avb6-specific integrin inhibitor into clinical development for the treatment of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, or IPF, in collaboration with AbbVie Inc., or AbbVie. We intend to advance our a4b7 program and MORF-720 toward Investigational New Drug applications, or INDs, by the middle of 2020 and as early as the end of 2019, respectively. Beyond our current targets, we are using our MInT Platform to create a broad pipeline of programs across a variety of therapeutic areas, all of which aim to harness the potential of inhibition or activation.
Integrins are a family of transmembrane cell adhesion proteins that localize cells in specific tissues and then modulate cellular functions in response to these environments. They are the only receptors that can "integrate" extracellular and intracellular stimuli. Integrins contain two subunits: one protein in the integrin dimer comes from the a family and one from the b family.
Combinations of various a and b subunits form 24 integrins that are subdivided across four receptor subgroups: those on leukocytes, and those that recognize RGD-peptide, collagen and laminin ligands. Their activity is modulated by the complexity of their conformational states. Tissues have distinct integrin expressions and these integrins play a role in autoimmune, cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, fibrosis and cancer. We believe the diversity and specificity of integrin involvement in a broad range of diseases make this set of molecules ideal drug targets.