Focusing on chronic pain
PharmNovo was founded in 2008 by the international medical researcher Bengt von Mentzer after 27 years as a drug discovery group leader for Astra Zeneca.
Finding a safe and effective way to help patients suffering from neuropathic pain, a population facing increasingly challenging conditions, has been the Holy Grail from the start for Bengt von Mentzer. With a focus on chronic pain treatment, PharmNovo started to develop novel delta opioid receptor agonists.
In collaboration with his colleague, medicinal chemist Ingemar Starke, Bengt von Mentzer identified novel potent, selective, and biased DOR agonists, an entirely new concept in pharmacology at the time.
In 2010, David Kendall, Professor of Pharmacology at Nottingham University, UK, joined the company and was appointed Chief Scientific Officer in 2015.
Under the leadership of David Kendall , PharmNovo has built long-standing collaborations with scientists at the University of Bristol (UK), the University of Pecz (HU), University of Michigan, Washington University and several other leading research centres, as well as an international network of leading pain experts and advisors.
The collaboration with Professor Eamon Kelly’s research group at the University of Bristol has been supported by grants from the UK Medical Research Council and that with the US colleagues by a grant from the National Institute of Drug Abuse
Pre-clinical studies were completed in 2020 for the candidate compound PN6047 with very promising results. PN6047 proved to be very potent in relieving neuropathic pain and, at the same time, essentially free of side effects.
In 2020 PharmNovo was granted a patent in the USA. Today, PharmNovo holds the intellectual property rights for PN6047 in all major markets, Europe, USA, Japan, China, and Australia.
In 2022, PharmNovo received approval from the Medical Products Agency and the Swedish Ethical Review Authority to start clinical studies of PN6047. The first-in-human clinical phase I study began in August of the same year and has shown very promising results so far.
Phase II studies are planned to start in Q2 2024. If all continues according to plan, PharmNovo may well be able to present the market with an approved pharmaceutical treatment in six to seven years,
PharmNovo’s team has grown during the past years and today consists of very experienced researchers in academia and industry, and the company has an extensive international network of leading expert advisors.