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An in-vitro study published in the journal Functional Foods in Health and Disease (2020; 10(8):357-367) shows the therapeutic potential of HBC’s OmeGo® salmon oil for the treatment of certain types of asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD, also known as “smokers’ lung”) via the modulation of eosinophil effector function.
Eosinophils are white blood cells (leukocytes) which form part of the body’s immune system helping to deal with infections. However, overactivity of eosinophils is seen in numerous inflammatory conditions including eosinophilic asthma. Poorly controlled inflammation reduces lung function and increases the risk of asthma exacerbations and hospitalisation.
This in-vitro study investigated the prophylactic effect of HBC’s enzymatically extracted salmon oil, OmeGo®, as a proxy for eating fresh whole oily fish, on eosinophil function using allergic human peripheral blood eosinophils.
The results of the study show that prophylactic treatment of allergic human peripheral blood eosinophils with OmeGo® modulates eosinophil effector function (measured via shape change assay and integrin expression) and increases apoptosis (programmed cell death). The eosinophil inhibition with OmeGo® was comparable to APOA-IV (active control) and markedly better than processed salmon oil. Krill oil and standard fish oil showed no to low eosinophil modulation. This indicates that a non-Omega fraction in OmeGo® provides this targeted action of modulating eosinophil function and that this fraction is mostly destroyed in processed salmon oil and absent in Krill oil and standard “18/12” fish oil.
Pre-clinical work with OmeGo® targeting eosinophil effector function is ongoing with guinea pig dosing studies and house dust mite studies. Human studies in eosinophilic asthma are planned to commence in 2021. A phase 2/3 trial (NCT04465513) of OmeGo® in the treatment of eosinophilic COVID-19 patients is ongoing and interim results are expected during Q4 2020. The trial is randomising patients with early Covid-19 pulmonary symptoms to best standard of care (BSC) vs BSC and OmeGo® CARDIO soft gels to prevent disease progression to severe respiratory distress. The primary endpoint is the number of days on assisted ventilation.
About 7-8% of the population suffer from asthma. Eosinophils are estimated to be important drivers of asthma in up to 40% of asthmatics overall and in up to 60% of patients with severe asthma. Inhaled bronchodilators (“relievers”), which expand the airways in the lungs, and inhaled corticosteroids, which reduce airway inflammation, are a mainstay of asthma treatment. However, a significant number of patients still suffer from asthma symptoms and exacerbations and are commonly referred to as steroid treatment resistant asthma patients, typically the result of eosinophil dysfunction. Additional treatment options targeting the underlying asthma disease process, especially those delivered orally, would be of significant benefit to patients struggling to gain adequate asthma control from standard therapy.
OmeGo® contains the full spectrum of omega fatty acids including EPA, DHA and DPA offering benefits on human cholesterol levels including reduction of the CVD biomarker, oxLDL-GP1, for which HBC has global patent rights. Only OmeGo® contains all the lipid-soluble compounds found in fresh salmonid fish thus providing all of the health benefits seen when consuming an oily fish-based diet. HBC uses its proprietary enzymatic hydrolysis technology to sustainably extract all the nutrients from the fish and transforms them into high value health products for human and pet consumption
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a type of obstructive lung disease characterized by long-term breathing problems and poor airflow. It is most commonly caused by smoking. The main symptoms include shortness of breath and cough with sputum production. COPD is a progressive disease, meaning it typically worsens over time. As well as its progressive nature patients suffer acute exacerbations with a sudden worsening of symptoms and associated increased lung inflammation. Around 20%-40% of COPD patients have raised blood eosinophils.
The full article from the Functional Foods in Health and Disease journal is attached.
For further information, please contact:
James Berger, Head of Investor Relations & Strategy at Hofseth BioCare ASA
Phone: +41 79 950 1034
Dr. Crawford Currie, Medical R&D at Hofseth BioCare ASA
Phone: +44 7968 195497
About Hofseth BioCare ASA:
HBC is a Norwegian biotech company that develops high-value ingredients and finished products. The ingredients are in various stages of discovery and preclinical development in collaboration with multiple clinics and university research labs in several countries. Lead preclinical and clinical candidates are in development toward treatment for iron-deficiency anemia, Gastro-Intestinal Inflammation (NEC/IBS/UC), prediabetes, age-related sarcopenia and osteoarthritis.
The company is founded on the core values of sustainability, traceability and optimal utilization of natural resources. Through an innovative hydrolysis technology, HBC can preserve the quality of lipids, proteins and calcium from fresh salmon off-cuts. Hofseth BioCare's headquarters are in Ålesund, Norway with branches in Oslo, London, Zürich, Chicago, Menlo Park and Tokyo.
HBC is listed on Oslo Stock Exchange Axess list with ticker "HBC". More information about Hofseth BioCare at hofsethbiocare.com and facebook.com/hofsethbiocare