Cambrian Bio reveals new pipeline company with focus on AMPK activation

Amplifier Therapeutics is going after “one of the most sought-after drug targets in aging research”.

Cambrian Bio, a clinical-stage biotech focused on treating and preventing chronic diseases of aging, has announced the launch of its new pipeline company, Amplifier Therapeutics. The organization will develop ATX-304, a pan-AMPK (AMP-activated protein kinase) activator and has already got its feet under the activation table, having acquired Betagenon AB, a Swedish biopharmaceutical company which has discovered novel AMPK activators; the development of these will continue as a part of the Amplifier team.

Longevity.Technology: Our cells run on energy, but when our biological power levels dwindle, sensors flag this up. One key energy sensor activated when energy levels in the cell are low is AMPK. This mechanism increases ATP generation, the energy-ferrying molecule that brings sugar from the blood into the cell, and mobilizes fat to produce more energy from fatty acids. AMPK is activated upon increased energy demand, such as exercise, fasting and reduced oxygen supply.

However, the body’s ability to activate AMPK decreases as we age, and given the central role of AMPK in whole body energy regulation, AMPK activators have broad potential therapeutic applications in metabolic conditions, cardiovascular diseases, kidney diseases and cancer.

Cambrian Bio’s approach is to develop interventions that treat specific diseases first, then deploy them as preventative medicines to improve the overall quality of life during aging. With more than a dozen novel therapeutics in its pipeline, Cambrian is showing no sign of taking its foot off the R&D gas pedal any time soon.

“AMPK is one of the most sought-after drug targets in aging research,” said James Peyer, PhD, CEO of Cambrian Bio. “Amplifier and Cambrian are thrilled to work with the former Betagenon team and investors to develop a first-of-its-kind AMPK activator. ATX-304 has broad therapeutic potential and has demonstrated a favorable safety and tolerability profile in early clinical studies. A safe and effective AMPK activator could be a life-changing medicine for patients and have the potential to prevent major chronic diseases.”

Amplifier Therapeutics will be led by industry veteran James Hall, MD, PhD. Hall joined as the CEO of Betagenon AB in 2021 and was previously the Head of Cardiovascular Business Development at AstraZeneca.

“ATX-304 has the capability of positively impacting multiple aging-related diseases. We look forward to the continued development of ATX-304 to achieve its greatest potential with the experienced and imaginative Cambrian team,” Hall commented.

Together with James Hall, Ruth Thieroff-Ekerdt, MD, Cambrian’s EVP of Clinical Development, will lead the strategy and execution of ATX-304’s clinical development plan. Cambrian Bio and Amplifier Therapeutics will initiate a Proof of Mechanism Phase 1b study later this year.