Oxford BioMedica plc, the leading gene-based biopharmaceutical company, announces that the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved its Investigational New Drug (IND) application for the Phase I/IIa clinical development of UshStat®, a novel gene-based treatment for Usher syndrome type 1B. UshStat® was designed and developed by Oxford BioMedica using the Company’s proprietary LentiVector® platform technology and is the third programme to enter clinical development under the Phase I/II ocular collaboration agreement signed with Sanofi in April 2009.
The approval of the IND follows the decision by the US Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee (RAC) to approve the UshStat® Phase I/IIa protocol in May 2011. The open label, dose escalation Phase I/IIa study will enrol up to 18 patients with Usher syndrome type 1B at the Oregon Health and Science University’s Casey Eye Institute, Portland, Oregon. The study, led by Professor Richard Weleber, will evaluate three dose levels for safety, tolerability and aspects of biological activity and is expected to be initiated by the end of 2011.