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Alpha Adrenergic Program

In collaboration with Allergan, we have discovered small molecule product candidates for the treatment of chronic pain. Chronic pain is a common form of pain that persists or progresses over a long period of time. In contrast to acute pain that usually arises suddenly in response to an identifiable injury and is transient, chronic pain persists over time and is often resistant to medical treatments. Chronic pain may be related to a number of different medical conditions, including diabetes, arthritis, migraine, fibromyalgia, irritable bowel syndrome, cancer, shingles, and previous trauma or injury. Due to the shortcomings of current therapies, we believe that there is a large unmet medical need for new chronic pain therapies with improved efficacy and side effect profiles.

Our novel alpha adrenergic agonists provide pain relief in a range of preclinical models, without the side effects of current pain therapies, including sedation and cardiovascular and respiratory effects. Allergan has conducted several Phase II trials in this program, and has reported preliminary results, including positive proof-of-concept in a visceral pain trial in patients that had hypersensitivity of the esophagus, and efficacy signals in two chronic pain trials in the areas of fibromyalgia and irritable bowel syndrome. Allergan has announced that it is seeking a partner for the further development of this program and for commercialization in areas predominantly served by general practitioners.

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