Cytokinetics and Cure SMA Renew Partnership to Advance Education and Awareness of SMA
ELK GROVE VILLAGE, Ill. and SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., Aug. 26, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Cure SMA and Cytokinetics, Inc. (Nasdaq:CYTK) today announced the renewal of their partnership to increase education, awareness, public policy and fundraising for spinal muscular atrophy (SMA). Cytokinetics will lend support for several of Cure SMA’s upcoming initiatives across the United States and continues as a member of the Cure SMA Industry Collaboration, a partnership between Cure SMA and pharmaceutical companies to address topics critical to advancing drug development in SMA. Cytokinetics remains committed to serving those living with SMA, a genetic disease that robs people of their physical strength and can take away their ability to walk, eat or breathe.
Cytokinetics will sponsor two events to help fundraise and increase awareness of SMA in the local community. In September, Cytokinetics will participate as a sponsor of the Virtual Walk-n-Roll program where SMA families will be walking and rolling around their neighborhoods for Cure SMA. Then, in October, Cytokinetics will support Cure SMA’s Evening of Hope: A Virtual Masquerade, an evening of inspiration, celebration, and hope uniting the SMA community across the country.
Additionally, Cytokinetics is pleased to continue its membership in the Cure SMA Industry Collaboration, which brings together pharmaceutical companies, Cure SMA, and other non-profit organizations, to address critical issues related to advancing drug development in SMA. Cytokinetics is actively involved in topic groups focused on regulatory affairs, clinical trials and patient reported data.
“Despite our events being entirely virtual due to the coronavirus pandemic, we are incredibly grateful to have continued support from Cytokinetics,” said Kenneth Hobby, President of Cure SMA. “We have seen significant progress in the treatment of patients with SMA, yet there is still a pressing need to increase awareness and access to care, especially during a time when families are facing many unknowns due to COVID-19. We appreciate our ongoing partnership with Cytokinetics to enable our local and national initiatives.”
“As we celebrate the courageous patients living with SMA during SMA Awareness Month, we remain committed to our longstanding partnership with Cure SMA,” said Robert I. Blum, President and Chief Executive Officer of Cytokinetics. “Through our participation in initiatives like the SMA Industry Collaboration we aim to work hand in hand with industry partners to address key priorities and unmet needs facing the community in order to improve the outlook for patients and their families.”
About Spinal Muscular Atrophy
Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is a severe, genetic neuromuscular disease that leads to debilitating muscle function and progressive, often fatal, muscle weakness. It occurs in 1 in 6,000 to 10,000 live births each year and is one of the most common potentially fatal genetic disorders. Spinal muscular atrophy manifests in various degrees of severity as progressive muscle weakness resulting in respiratory and mobility impairment. There are four types of SMA, named for age of initial onset of muscle weakness and related symptoms: Type 1 (Infantile), Type 2 (Intermediate), Type 3 (Juvenile) and Type 4 (Adult onset). Of the prevalent population, approximately 80% of the patients are characterized as Type 2 and Type 3. Life expectancy and disease severity vary by type of SMA. Type 1 patients have the worst prognosis, with a life expectancy of no more than two years unless treated with SMN-directed therapies; Type 2 patients have delayed motor milestones with the most advanced milestone normally achieved being sitting unsupported; Type 3 patients can usually stand and walk but have increasingly limited mobility as their abilities regress as they age; Type 4 patients may have a normal life span but eventually suffer gradual weakness in the proximal muscles of the extremities, eventually resulting in mobility issues. With the recent introduction of SMN-directed therapies, it is expected that patients may live longer, but will still have a significant need to address ongoing disabilities related to respiration and mobility.
About Cure SMA
Cure SMA is dedicated to the treatment and cure of spinal muscular atrophy (SMA)—a disease that takes away a person’s ability to walk, eat, or breathe. Since 1984, Cure SMA has grown to be the largest network of individuals, families, clinicians, and research scientists working together to advance SMA research, support affected individuals/caregivers, and educate public and professional communities about SMA. The organization has directed and invested in comprehensive research that has shaped the scientific community's understanding of SMA, led to breakthroughs in treatment and care, and provided individuals and families the support they need today. For more information, visit www.cureSMA.org.
Cytokinetics is a late-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on discovering, developing and commercializing first-in-class muscle activators and next-in-class muscle inhibitors as potential treatments for debilitating diseases in which muscle performance is compromised and/or declining. As a leader in muscle biology and the mechanics of muscle performance, the company is developing small molecule drug candidates specifically engineered to impact muscle function and contractility. Cytokinetics is collaborating with Amgen Inc. (Amgen) to develop omecamtiv mecarbil, a novel cardiac muscle activator. Omecamtiv mecarbil is the subject of an international clinical trials program in patients with heart failure including GALACTIC-HF and METEORIC-HF. Amgen holds an exclusive worldwide license to develop and commercialize omecamtiv mecarbil with a sublicense held by Servier for commercialization in Europe and certain other countries. Cytokinetics is developing reldesemtiv, a fast skeletal muscle troponin activator (FSTA) for the potential treatment of ALS and other neuromuscular indications following conduct of FORTITUDE-ALS and other Phase 2 clinical trials. The company is considering potential advancement of reldesemtiv to Phase 3. Cytokinetics is collaborating with Astellas Pharma Inc. (Astellas) to research, develop and commercialize other novel mechanism skeletal sarcomere activators (excluding FSTAs). Licenses held by Amgen and Astellas are subject to specified co-development and co-commercialization rights of Cytokinetics. Cytokinetics is also developing CK-274, a novel cardiac myosin inhibitor that company scientists discovered independent of its collaborations, for the potential treatment of hypertrophic cardiomyopathies (HCM). Cytokinetics has granted Ji Xing Pharmaceuticals Limited an exclusive license to develop and commercialize CK-274 in China and Taiwan, in accordance with Cytokinetics’ planned global registration programs. Cytokinetics is conducting REDWOOD-HCM, a Phase 2 clinical trial of CK-274 in patients with obstructive HCM. Cytokinetics continues its over 20-year history of pioneering innovation in muscle biology and related pharmacology focused to diseases of muscle dysfunction and conditions of muscle weakness.
This press release contains forward-looking statements for purposes of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 (the "Act"). Cytokinetics disclaims any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements, and claims the protection of the Act's Safe Harbor for forward-looking statements. Examples of such statements include, but are not limited to, statements relating to Cytokinetics' and its partners' research and development activities of Cytokinetics’ product candidates. Such statements are based on management's current expectations, but actual results may differ materially due to various risks and uncertainties, including, but not limited to the risks related to Cytokinetics' business outlined in Cytokinetics' filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance, and Cytokinetics' actual results of operations, financial condition and liquidity, and the development of the industry in which it operates, may differ materially from the forward-looking statements contained in this press release. Any forward-looking statements that Cytokinetics makes in this press release speak only as of the date of this press release. Cytokinetics assumes no obligation to update its forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, after the date of this press release.
Senior Vice President, Corporate Communications, Investor Relations