New Research Indicates Expanded Potential Uses For Phoenix Biotechnology, Inc. Drug PBI-05204: Inhibits Ebola And Marburg Viruses And Offers Novel Treatment Approaches For Alzheimer’s And Parkinson’s Diseases

Published: Sep 28, 2017

SAN ANTONIO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Two recent independent research studies – one conducted by the United States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases and the other by a team of researchers from English and Chinese institutions – indicated important expanded potential uses for Phoenix Biotechnology’s drug, PBI-05204.

The Army research focused on the effect of PBI-05204 as an inhibitor of the Ebola and Marburg viruses. The UK-Chinese research, published in April, 2017 by Elsevier, which also publishes The Lancet and Cell as well as other scientific journals and publications, reviews the potential benefits of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), which PBI-05204 has been shown to increase and may have a positive impact on both Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.

“Antiviral potency of an extract from Nerium oleander” is the title of a poster presented during the International Filovirus Symposium in mid-September (2017) in Marburg, Germany. Oleandrin, from the Nerium oleander plant, is the key active ingredient of Phoenix Biotech’s PBI-05204 drug. The Army’s research focused on the antiviral efficacy of the drug and oleandrin, a cardiac glycoside.

The researchers found that PBI-05204 and oleandrin fully inhibited both the Marburg and Ebola viruses in Vero cells, which are lineages of cells extracted from African green monkeys.

“This study was not conducted on humans, but the impact of PBI-05204 and oleandrin in fully inhibiting the proliferation of Marburg and Ebola viruses clearly is very significant in dealing with these deadly diseases,” said Robert A. Newman, Ph.D., President and Chief Science Officer of Phoenix Biotechnology and a coauthor of the research presentation. “This is not a cure, but for those who contract these diseases, the research indicates that PBI-05204, through its primary oleandrin ingredient, may be able to stop the spread of those viruses in the human body and offer a much better opportunity for survival and recovery.”

The research team on the Army study included Rebekah M. James, Ph.D.; Danielle E. Dorosky; Spencer W. Stonier, Ph.D.; and John M. Dye, Ph.D. from the Army’s Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases at Fort Detrick, MD, and Dr. Newman.

In referencing the new review of BDNF research published by Elsevier – “1Molecular mechanisms of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in neuroprotection: Recent developments” – Newman noted, “While a great deal of attention has been focused on possible prevention and/or treatment of Alzheimer’s through clinical evaluation of agents that alter cholinergic pathways or attempt to reduce or eliminate amyloid plaques within brain neuronal tissue, these clinical efforts have largely failed despite significant expenditures of time and money.”

1Molecular mechanisms of brain derived neurotrophic factor in neuroprotection: Recent developments. Zhao H, Alam A, San C-Y, Eguchi S, Chen Q, Lian Q and Ma D. Brain Research 1665 (2017) 1-21.

“An alternate approach may involve addressing neuroinflammation and, at the same time, augmentation of the critical brain growth factor known as BDNF,” he said. “Levels of BDFNF are significantly lower in individuals with both Alzheimer’s as well as Parkinson’s diseases. Unfortunately, there is no currently available prescription drug that increases BDNF production while also reducing neuroinflammation.”

However, through other published research (“2BDNF Mediates Neuroprotection against Oxygen-Glucose Deprivation by the Cardiac Glycoside Oleandrin” by Michael J. Van Kanegan, Dong Ning He, Denise E. Dunn, Peiying Yang, Robert A. Newman, Anne E. West and Donald C. Lo. The Journal of Neuroscience, 15 January 2014), PBI-05204 and its active ingredients have been shown to not only reduce inflammation of neuronal tissue but also result in the production of BDNF with subsequent interaction with its receptor TrK2,3, Newman said.

2BDNF mediates neuroprotection against oxygen-glucose deprivation by the cardiac glycoside oleandrin. Van Kanegan MJ, He DN, Dunn DE, Yang P, Newman RA, West AE, Lo DC. J Neurosci. 2014 Jan 15;34(3):963-8.

Regarding the role of BDNF and neuroprotection, the authors of the UK/Chinese study1 stated:

1. “As a neurotherapeutic agent, BDNF has demonstrated potential therapeutic benefits in modulating the pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s disease.”
2. “BDNF is a potent inhibitor of apoptosis (cell death) and neurotoxin-induced degeneration of dopaminergic neurons.” (NOTE: the loss of dopamine is a primary contributor to Parkinson’s disease.)
3. The authors conclude: “Overall, low BDNF levels may be a viable nonspecific marker of neurodegeneration that is common to several cognitive disorders, including Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, depression and schizophrenia.”

Newman said, “These key points indicate to us that PBI-05204’s ability to produce BDNF within brain tissue with subsequent interaction with its receptor achieve something that to date is rather unique in promoting the health and viability of brain tissue. Together with the ability to reduce inflammation, itself believed to contribute significantly to neurodegenerative diseases, we believe that PBI-05204 may offer a unique therapeutic advantage over currently available palliative treatments.”

About Phoenix Biotechnology, Inc.

Phoenix Biotechnology, Inc., a San Antonio, Texas based biotechnology company, was incorporated in Texas in 2003 to develop promising agents with minimal or no side effects for targeted therapy of malignant tumor growth. Targeted therapy has recently become the focus in the medical community for the treatment of oncologic diseases. Pharmaceutical companies are seeking to develop drugs that target particular and discrete targets in tumor cells providing maximum efficacy yet without affecting healthy cells.

PBI-05204 is just such a drug. Following a tradition of investigating plant sources for medicinal drugs, Phoenix Biotechnology has developed a patented modified supercritical CO2 extract of Nerium oleander that has been found both in vitro and in vivo to bind to just such discrete cellular targets in solid tumors.

While the prevention and treatment of human malignant disease remains PBI's primary focus, novel, patented extracts of Nerium oleander continue to reveal promising avenues of research showing activity against certain viral and neurodegenerative diseases.

for Phoenix Biotechnology, Inc
Jim Dublin, 210-387-3113

Back to news