Argus Pharmaceuticals Inc. announced Wednesday that itreceived a notice of allowance for a patent covering themanufacturing of its drug, AR-121, for HIV and systemic fungalinfections in patients undergoing cancer chemotherapy andorgan transplants, and HIV patients.
AR-121 is now in Phase I/II human clinical trials as an anti-viral in HIV-infected patients, and Argus expects to utilize thesafety data from the trials to enter clinicals with the drug forsystemic fungal infections later this year.
AR-121, Argus' leading anti-infective agent, is an intravenousformulation of nystatin, a topical anti-fungal agent. Butseverely toxic side effects have prevented the intravenous useof nystatin for systemic fungal infections. AR-121 alters thetoxicity of nystatin so that it can be administered intherapeutic doses.
According to Ken Cohen, spokesman for company in TheWoodlands, Texas, only a limited number of therapies exist forsystemic fungal infections, including Bristol-Meyer Squibb'sAmphotericin B and Fluconacole, which is sold by Pfizer Inc.
The company's products are the result of a program, to whichArgus holds exclusive rights, that is focused on macrophagesand lipid carriers at The University of Texas M.D. AndersonCancer Center in Houston.
-- Michelle Slade Associate Editor
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