Cincinnati Children's and Procter & Gamble Reach Licensing Agreement for Potential Heart Failure Treatment

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center and Procter & Gamble Pharmaceuticals (P&GP), a division of the Procter & Gamble Co. (NYSE:PG), have reached a licensing agreement for a potential treatment for heart failure -- commonly referred to as congestive heart failure.

The agreement concerns an enzyme involved in heart failure discovered by Jeffery Molkentin, PhD, a researcher in the Division of Molecular Cardiovascular Biology at Cincinnati Children's. Dr. Molkentin collaborated with Evangelia Kranias, PhD, a researcher at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine.

The licensing agreement involves targeting this enzyme, called protein kinase C alpha (PKC-a), with novel therapeutics as a potential treatment for the five million people in the United States who have heart failure. The agreement gives P&GP exclusive commercial rights to develop and, if successful, market a new therapy for this disease identified by targeting this protein.

"In addition to our internal discovery efforts, we continually look to identify external opportunities to build our pharmaceutical pipeline," said Dr. Kevin Driscoll, director of Discovery Biological Sciences at P&GP. "Dr. Molkentin's research program was a great fit with our cardiovascular therapeutic area."

Heart failure is a potentially lethal, degenerative condition that occurs when the heart muscle weakens and the ventricle no longer contracts normally. The heart can then no longer pump enough blood to the body. This may limit tolerance for exercise or may cause fluid retention with swelling of the feet or shortness of breath.

"Heart failure affects all ages," says Tom Boat, MD, chairman of pediatrics and director of the Cincinnati Children's Research Foundation. "We are pleased that Dr. Molkentin has been able to partner with P&GP in an effort to explore new therapeutic approaches to this devastating condition. These partnerships are particularly important for moving discoveries in the laboratory to applications in the clinical setting."

Cincinnati Children's is a 423-bed institution devoted to bringing the world the joy of healthier kids. Cincinnati Children's is dedicated to transforming the way health care is delivered by providing care that is timely, efficient, effective, family-centered, equitable and safe. It ranks third nationally among all pediatric centers in research grants from the National Institutes of Health. The Cincinnati Children's vision is to be the leader in improving child health.

Contact Information

Jim Feuer, jim.feuer@cchmc.org, 513-636-4656