Dr. Taku Kambayashi, one of the co-founders and Chief Scientific Advisor of Abrax Japan, has recently published his seminal study on the therapeutic potential of the cytokine thymic stromal lymphopoietin (TSLP), in the journal Science. In his study, Dr. Kambayashi discovered that over-expression of TSLP in obese mice can selectively induce reduction in white adipose tissue. Excessive accumulation of white adipose tissue is associated with increased risk of diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and stroke. Accordingly, overexpression of TSLP in obese mice decreased their triglycerides and improved blood glucose and fasting insulin levels. It was found that the selective loss of white adipose tissue occurred through increased secretion of sebum, an oily substance produced by the skin for skin barrier function.
Jo Narita, co-founder and CEO of Abrax Japan, praised Dr. Kambayashi’s accomplishment and said, “we are extremely delighted to see Dr. Kambayashi’s pioneering discovery published in Science. This study provides the foundation for the therapeutic benefit of TSLP and has enormous implications in multiple disease settings. This pioneering work was immediately highlighted in Nature Reviews Immunology, serving as a testament to the impact of the findings. Dr. Kambayashi’s elegant study and findings further support that Abrax Japan and our product ABX-919 are on the correct path for development of a novel medical treatment for tens of millions of atopic dermatitis patients. Additionally, Abrax Japan’s TSLP-based platform technology can potentially provide novel medical treatment modalities for a variety of medical conditions and diseases.”
Abrax Japan is currently focusing on development of a topical spray medication for atopic dermatitis, called ABX-919, which can induce increased production of TSLP from the skin. Abrax Japan’s current pipeline includes early-stage development of products targeting androgenic alopecia, hypertriglyceridemia, and others. A first-in-human trial with atopic dermatitis patients is planned for early next year in Australia.
** Click here to read his full-length paper on Science **
Thymic stromal lymphopoietin induces adipose loss through sebum hypersecretion
Nature Reviews Immunology
TSLP uses up fats to coat the skin
Penn Medicine News
Mice Treated with This Cytokine Lose Weight by ‘Sweating’ Fat
The Philadelphia Inquirer
These obese mice lost weight by ‘sweating’ their fat, Penn team finds
Background on Abrax Japan
Abrax Japan was founded in 2020 and is focusing on commercialization of the basic research discovery by Dr. Taku Kambayashi at the University of Pennsylvania. Understanding the true value of TSLP and its medical applications, Jo Narita, CEO, tied up with Dr. Kambayashi to establish Abrax Japan in Tokyo, Japan. Abrax has raised US $2 million through Seed funding from private investors to support the initial development activities and is currently raising US $2.5 million in Seed 4 capital to support further development and manufacturing as well as the upcoming clinical trial.
Background on ABX-919
ABX-919 is a reformulated drug from a commercially approved product for psoriasis, which can take advantage of the 505(b)(2) regulatory pathway under the FDA for accelerated approval. ABX-919 is specially formulated to be administered topically for treatment of atopic dermatitis.
Background on Atopic Dermatitis
Atopic dermatitis (AD) is a chronic inflammatory skin condition with a wide spectrum of clinical presentations and combinations of symptoms that can affect the quality of life of patients. Almost 25% of children and 2 to 3% of adults in the general population are affected by this disease. Clinical manifestations include intense pruritus, erythema, skin dryness, oozing and crust formation; the main symptom is pruritus and appears early in life and often precedes allergic disease such as asthma.
Current treatment is based on lifestyle modifications to reduce exposure to environmental stimuli and allergens, skin hydration and local control of itching. Multiple topical therapies are used in AD and include topical anti‑inflammatory treatment (corticosteroids), calcineurin inhibitors (pimecrolimus, tacrolimus, and Crisaborole), and oral antihistamine therapy. Safety of these products for use in children and adolescents has been of concern for Food and Drug Administration (FDA).