Rejuvenate Biomed announces positive results from sarcopenia clinical trial

RJx-01 continues on the road to success, meeting all primary and secondary endpoints in placebo-controlled Phase 1b clinical trial in disuse-induced muscle atrophy.

Rejuvenate Biomed, a clinical-stage longevity biotech advancing therapeutics to delay the onset of age-related diseases, today announced the successful completion of its 6-week clinical proof-of-mechanism study with lead candidate RJx-01. RJx-01, a novel combination drug comprising galantamine and metformin, demonstrated positive results in 42 elderly male subjects with disuse-induced muscle atrophy.

As well as meeting all primary and secondary endpoints. RJx-01 was generally safe and well tolerated with no reported treatment-related serious or severe adverse events. Rejuvenate Biomed detailed that its proprietary RJx-01 formulation exhibited ‘excellent’ bioavailability.

Longevity.Technology: While the musculoskeletal disease sarcopenia presents a significant health challenge, this trial is interesting for another reason – the novel combination of metformin and galantamine. Both are are approved drugs with well-established safety profiles – metformin well known as a diabetes treatment and galantamine being used to tackle Alzheimer’s – but Rejuvenate Biomed is investigating the combination of both compounds on sarcopenia for the first time.

There are still more results to come, as the company will reveal its evaluation of the impact of RJx-01 on exploratory pharmacodynamic parameters, including blood and muscle-related biomarkers, along with clinical assessments of muscle mass and strength, later this year. Rejuvenate Biomed is also gearing up to initiate a Phase 2 program focused on RJx-01 in the treatment of sarcopenia in 2024.

Dr Silke Huettner, Chief Medical Officer of Rejuvenate Biomed, said: “This proof-of-mechanism study has confirmed the excellent pharmacokinetics, as well as the safety and tolerability profile of RJx-01. As we eagerly anticipate the forthcoming results on the exploratory endpoints, we are confident to embark on a Phase 2 program dedicated to the treatment of sarcopenia in 2024. The advancement of our lead program is paving the way for the expansion of the broader pipeline via our drug discovery platforms.”

Dr Ann Beliën, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Rejuvenate Biomed, added: “We are thrilled to unveil compelling initial data from the Phase 1b study of RJx-01, confirming the power of our drug discovery platforms. This represents a pivotal milestone in our mission to keep people healthy for life, starting with addressing muscle aging in sarcopenic patients.”

Sarcopenia, which is characterized by the progressive loss of skeletal muscle strength and mass, manifests chronically with age or as an acute condition induced by the muscle disuse which might occur, for example, following immobilization due to a stay in hospital. Chronic sarcopenia affects up to 22% of 65-year-olds and 50% of 80-year-olds, with no currently approved drug treatments.

In this Phase 1b trial, a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, 42 healthy men aged 65 to 75 volunteered to have one leg immobilized in a cast for two weeks, thereby inducing mild acute sarcopenia. Subsequently, they were closely monitored during the immobilization phase and for an additional four weeks post-cast removal in the recovery phase. Throughout the entire six-week treatment duration, half of the participants (21) received RJx-01, while the other half (21) received a placebo [1]. Following this period, all volunteers underwent a personalized muscle strength rehabilitation program.

The results from this encouraging clinical trial, which builds on preclinical proof-of-concept data generated from two mouse models, have been published in JCI Insight.


Photograph: bialasiewicz/Envato