Phosphodiesterase 10 (PDE10) is an enzyme that is expressed in areas of the brain strongly linked to diseases that affect cognition, including schizophrenia and Huntington's disease. Cognitive dysfunction occurs early in these diseases and is responsible for substantial disability. PDE10 inhibitors have been shown to be effective in multiple animal models of behavior and cognition, and there remain substantial unmet clinical needs with current treatments. Our proprietary compound OMS824 inhibits PDE10 and is being developed in clinical programs for the treatment of cognitive disorders, including schizophrenia and Huntington's disease. In schizophrenia, OMS824 may have, in addition to cognitive enhancement, beneficial effects on the positive (e.g., hallucinations) and negative (e.g., flat affect) symptoms of the disease. In Huntington's disease, OMS824 may improve motor and behavioral abnormalities as well as cognition. OMS824 may address other limitations of current treatments for both schizophrenia and Huntington's disease, for example, by avoiding the weight gain, hyperlipidemia, and the risk of sudden cardiac death associated with current antipsychotic medications as well as the depression and suicidal ideation seen with tetrabenazine, the only FDA-approved treatment for Huntington's disease.
We have been evaluating OMS824 in two Phase 2 programs: one in patients with schizophrenia and the other in Huntington's disease patients.
The FDA has designated OMS824 as an orphan drug for Huntington's disease. OMS824 has also received Fast Track designation from the FDA for the treatment of cognitive impairment in patients with Huntington's disease.
As of February 28, 2015, we own five issued patents and six pending patent application in the U.S., and four issued patents and 29 pending patent applications in foreign markets that claim proprietary PDE10 inhibitors.