Vericiguat is a medicinal product in clinical development for the treatment of heart failure (HF) with reduced ejection fraction. HF is a complex clinical syndrome of symptoms and signs that suggest the efficiency of the heart as a pump is impaired. Symptoms include breathlessness and fatigue, and signs of the condition include swollen ankles and crackling sounds in the lungs. More than half of people with HF have a reduced ejection fraction (HFrEF), also referred to as systolic heart failure, where the heart muscle does not contract effectively, and therefore less oxygen-rich blood is pumped out to the body. There remains a large unmet need for new therapies in the treatment of HFrEF.
Vericiguat is given by mouth (tablets) and works by stimulating a protein called soluble guanylate cyclase (sGC). In people without HF, sGC is naturally stimulated by a chemical called nitric oxide (NO) present within the blood vessels. The stimulation of sGC is required for normal heart function. Patients with HF produce less NO, meaning they are unable to naturally stimulate sGC which leads to symptoms of HF. Therefore, stimulation of sGC by vericiguat helps to relieve symptoms of HF. If licensed, vericiguat may provide a treatment option for people with HFrEF who currently have limited therapies available.
Fevipiprant is in clinical development for the treatment of patients aged 12 years and older with uncontrolled asthma who remain symptomatic despite treatment with inhaled corticosteroids (ICS) with or without at least one additional controller. Whilst there is no cure for asthma, most patients are able to control their symptoms by taking daily preventative medication and additional controllers when required. However, a small subset of asthma patients are resistant to the current standard of care for asthma and are unable to control their symptoms. This can have severe implications on their quality of life as uncontrolled asthma can result in decreased physical fitness, decreased sleep quality and decreased productivity at work or school.