BASEL, SWITZERLAND — Strekin AG announced this week that it had successfully closed a Seed C financing round totaling CHF10 million (approximately $10.3 USD) from private investors. The latest financing round allows the company to conduct a second clinical trial of its leading drug candidate, STR001, as a potential new treatment for sudden sensorineural hearing loss (SSNHL), and to “pave the way for broader indications”.
STR001 is a PPARγ (peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-gamma) agonist. According to the company, STR001’s therapeutic properties have been extensively researched in a variety of preclinical models of cochlear hair cell protection and hearing loss.
Currently, one trial undergoing examination is evaluating the effectiveness of intra-tympanic STR001 to prevent hearing loss in patients undergoing cochlear implantation (CI) surgery.
RESTORE Clinical Trials
The current financing will help fund a new Phase 3 trial, referred to as RESTORE, and secure the company’s operational needs until early 2019.
The Phase 3 trial, RESTORE, is an international, randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trial of STR001 in patients suffering from a sudden onset sensorineural hearing loss. The trial will evaluate STR001 intra-tympanic treatment, both with and without oral follow-up with STR001 tablets.
The RESTORE trials will be conducted in more than 30 locations across Europe and in the United States.
“With our current Phase 2 trial progressing well in CI patients, we are now pleased to have secured the funding to launch a second clinical trial in sudden sensorineural hearing loss. Both trials address a clear unmet medical need in patients who have suffered an acute event that may lead to severe life-long hearing loss. If successful, the confirmatory nature of both trials, as well as the orphan disease status of the indication, may allow Strekin to bring STR001 to the market. Having received orphan drug designation for STR001 in the treatment of Sudden Sensorineural Hearing Loss in Europe earlier this year, is well aligned with this strategy.” — Alexander Bausch, Strekin Founder and CEO
There are currently no approved drugs available for the treatment of sudden hearing loss.