Novel Hepatitis C Targeting Compounds

University Reference Number: U-5366
Web Published: Jul 30, 2012

Invention Summary
Two different structural classes of small molecules with activity against Hepatitis C have been identified.   These compounds are RNA-targeted therapeutics which target the internal ribosome entry site (IRES) in the HCV domain IIa RNA.  Antiviral activity results from interference with HCV protein translation and interaction with the 40S ribosome.

Features & Benefits

- The HCV IRES sequence is highly conserved across HCV genotypes, and targeted inhibitors are expected to be broadly effective and display relatively low toxicity.

- Lead compound potency is in the low micromolar range.   The team is continuing identification and optimization of potential leads.

- Compounds show good in vivo activity in a number of cell culture systems, with minimal toxicity. 

Market Opportunity
Hepatitis C is a global health concern, with over 150 million people infected worldwide.  It is the leading cause of liver transplantation and liver cancer.   Current treatments are lacking in effectiveness.   Novel approaches to treatment could capture a large part of the global market, which is projected to reach $12B in the US by 2015.

Intellectual Property
Provisional patent applications are pending.

Dr. Darrell Davis, Department of Medicinal Chemistry and Dr. Curt Hagedorn, Internal Medicine.

Patent Information:
Licensing Contact:
Beth Drees
Director of Business & Technology Development
University of Utah
Darrell Davis
Curt Hagedorn
Shuanghu Liu
Hariprasad Vankayalapati