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12:00 AM
 | 
Sep 19, 2011
 |  BioCentury  |  Emerging Company Profile

Galera: Replacing SOD

Galera hopes SOD mimic fights cancer as well as stem chemoradiation side effects

Galera: Replacing SOD

Galera Therapeutics LLC believes its small molecule that mimics the activity of superoxide dismutase can help kill cancer cells while simultaneously preventing side effects of chemoradiation. The company plans to start a Phase IIa trial of GC4419 to prevent oral mucositis by year end, while also generating preclinical POC for the compound as a cancer therapeutic.

Superoxide is a free radical byproduct of mitochondrial energy metabolism that must be removed from the body because of its toxicity. This responsibility falls to superoxide dismutase (SOD), an enzyme that catalyzes superoxide to hydrogen peroxide.

According to Chairman and CEO Robert Beardsley, GC4419 is "a small molecule replacement" that replicates the enzymatic rate and specificity of SOD.

The compound was discovered in the early 1990s in the lab of Dennis Riley at the G.D. Searle & Co. unit of Monsanto Co., where free radical reduction was envisioned as a therapeutic approach for cardiac reperfusion injury in stroke patients.

Riley, who is Galera's CSO, told BioCentury he was searching for molecules to decrease overproduction of superoxide and used computer...

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