Theratechnologies Inc. (Theratechnologies) (TSX:TH) (NASDAQ:THTX), a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of innovative therapies, today highlighted new data on the mechanism of effect of tesamorelin presented in an oral presentation given today by Lindsay T. Fourman, M.D., of the Metabolism Unit, Department of Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, at The Liver Meeting® 2020 of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD).
Results from a new proteomics sub-analysis presented by Dr. Fourman show that serum levels of three proteins associated with the development of Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis (NASH) and fibrosis, Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A (VEGFA), Transforming Growth Factor Beta 1 (TGFβ1) and Colony Stimulating Factor 1 (CSF1), were significantly reduced in tesamorelin patients compared to the placebo group. Specifically, the difference in serum levels, consistent with downregulation in hepatic gene expression, of VEGFA was log2-fold, -0.24 (p=0.03), TGFβ1 was log2-fold -0.31 (p=0.03) and CSF1 log2-fold -0.19 (p=0.004).
“These results help to further our understanding as to how tesamorelin works to reduce liver fat and fibrosis. The impact of tesamorelin on serum level reduction of three proteins associated with NASH progression is yet another indication of the potential benefits of developing tesamorelin for the treatment of NASH”, said Dr. Christian Marsolais, Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer, Theratechnologies.
This sub-study extended results previously obtained from the transcriptomic analysis of the liver biopsies for the tesamorelin study in HIV patients with Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD). These prior results were published in JCI Insight in 2020 and The Lancet HIV in October 2019. Results from this current sub-analysis help to better understand the mechanisms behind the effect of tesamorelin on ballooning, inflammation and fibrosis observed in NAFLD and NASH.
“In addition to its known effects to decrease liver fat, these results show that tesamorelin might induce key metabolic pathways that could have a direct effect on inflammation and fibrosis”, said Dr. Steven Grinspoon, Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Chief of the Metabolism Unit at Massachusetts General Hospital. “These results are additional evidence that support the development of tesamorelin for the treatment of NASH”, concluded Dr. Grinspoon.