Acute pancreatitis, involving a sudden inflammation of the pancreas, is a major unmet need in gastroenterology. Severe cases can land patients in the ICU for weeks or months, while treatment options are relegated to support. The condition causes approximately 330,000 hospital admissions annually, according to a 2018 study. Some 20,000 people in the U.S. die from the disease each year.
Lamassu Pharma (Durham, N.C.) is developing a drug known as RABI-767 that could offer hope to patients with severe acute pancreatitis. The company is gearing up for a Phase 1 trial for the drug.
Initially discovered by the Mayo Clinic, RABI-767 is a small molecule lipase inhibitor and Lamassu’s lead candidate. After Mayo performed several experiments on the drug candidate, Lamassu moved swiftly to license it. “We kind of went zero to 100 in two seconds,” said Dr. Gabi Hanna, CEO of the company.
Offering a treatment option for patients with severe acute pancreatitis could…