Advancing a Diversified Pipeline of Potential Best-in-Class Programs

Our pipeline of precision medicines target rare, severe kidney disorders with few currently approved therapies.


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Atrasentan is a potent and selective endothelin A (ETA) receptor antagonist that is currently being evaluated in a phase 3 registration trial (ALIGN) for IgA nephropathy and a phase 2 open-label basket trial (AFFINITY) of proteinuric glomerular diseases, including IgA nephropathy, FSGS, Alport syndrome and DKD.

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BION-1301, a potentially disease-modifying anti-APRIL monoclonal antibody, is being evaluated in a phase 1/2 trial of patients with IgA nephropathy.

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CHK-336 is an oral small molecule lactate dehydrogenase A inhibitor with liver-targeted tissue distribution for the treatment of primary and idiopathic hyperoxaluria that is currently being evaluated in a phase 1 healthy volunteer trial.

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One of the key challenges in studying and treating kidney disease has been the complexity of the organ, with nearly 30 distinct cell types, each with its own function and purpose. This cellular diversity and structure has made understanding the mechanisms associated with kidney function loss challenging. However, the recent development of single-cell RNA sequencing of different kidney cell populations presents a new opportunity to clearly understand the molecular mechanisms of kidney function and disease. We utilize single-cell RNA sequencing techniques and proprietary datasets developed by our academic founder, Ben Humphreys (Washington University, St. Louis, MO), to gain unprecedented insights into kidney disease mechanisms.

Chinook’s experienced research and development team has partnered with academic founders and key opinion leaders to identify targets and utilize novel translational technologies to develop precision medicines for kidney diseases.

The cellular complexity of the kidney also presents barriers to developing translationally-relevant models of human kidney diseases. Recently, kidney organoids and patient-derived 3D kidney cellular systems have emerged as advanced preclinical models to study kidney disease. We partner with leading academic collaborators to apply these novel human organoids as translational model systems for target validation in kidney disease indications. We believe our approach using these and other validation tools provides significant insights into human disease mechanisms and allows us to select and validate key targets that are central drivers of human kidney diseases.

To supplement our internal research efforts, in March 2021 we entered into a strategic collaboration with Evotec focused on the discovery and development of novel precision medicine therapies for patients with chronic kidney diseases. Based on Evotec’s proprietary comprehensive molecular datasets from thousands of patients across chronic kidney diseases of multiple underlying etiologies, we and Evotec are working towards jointly identifying, characterizing and validating novel mechanisms and discovering precision medicines for IgA nephropathy, lupus nephritis, polycystic kidney disease and other primary glomerular diseases. The collaboration also involves further characterization of pathways and patient stratification strategies for programs currently in Chinook’s clinical and preclinical pipeline.

Gaining access to the NURTuRE cohort study and other proprietary patient biobanks, along with Evotec’s multi-omics integration platform, enables us to define the molecular drivers of kidney diseases, identify novel targets for drug development in selected patient sub-populations and continue to build the foundation for our precision medicine approach. With a focus on comprehensive molecular disease classification, combined with prospective clinical outcomes, we believe we have the opportunity to potentially deliver targeted therapies to the right patient populations.

Scientific Publications

Our scientific and clinical findings have been presented and published in peer-reviewed forums, and a selection of these have been curated for reference.

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Partnering Opportunities

We believe science’s greatest achievements were the result of cooperation. Reach out to us to discuss potential collaboration and partnering opportunities if you have interest in advancing drugs to change the course of kidney care.

Contact: bd@chinooktx.com