Autoimmune diseases (ADs) comprise a heterogeneous group of more than 100 different pathological entities that globally affect 10% of the world population. Only in the USA they represent around 30 million patients with an estimated cost of about 10 billion dollars/year. There has been a significant increase in the incidence of these diseases during the last decades, becoming the second cause of chronic disease and the third cause of work disability in developed countries.
Immunosuppressive drugs are widely employed in the treatment of ADs. However, these drugs are not very specific and have multiple unwanted side effects. Multiple monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) against different cytokines or soluble receptors for these factors, globally called biological drugs, have been developed and successfully used in these diseases. However, approximately 30% of patients with severe ADs do not respond to the existing therapies and the emergence of drug resistances is common. This is precisely the problem that Inhibitec-Anticuerpos S.L. tries to solve.
We have identified BAMBI (BMP and Activin Membrane-Bound Inhibitor) as a new molecular target in ADs. Furthermore, we have developed inhibitory anti-BAMBI mAbs with preventive and therapeutic effects in murine experimental models of in rheumatoid arthritis and psoriasis, both in its cutaneous and articular forms. Interestingly, our mAb also recognizes human BAMBI. This technology has been protected by an international patent application. According to that, the final goal of Inhibitec-Anticuerpos S.L. is to introduce a humanized version of the anti-BAMBI mAb into clinical phases for the treatment of inflammatory/ADs in humans.