Why did Angany choose to address cat allergy for its first vaccine-candidate?
Why not pollens or house dust mites, or a food allergy target? The choice was certainly not simple. With nearly 1 in 6 people being allergic to cats, making it possible for millions of cat-loving people to enjoy their favorite pet without being sick weighed heavily.
Still today, allergy to cats forces so many people with heartbreaking choices like finding another home for their cat and depriving a cat-loving family members the joy of a precious relationship. Cat allergy also has professional consequences. For some, it’s a career choice in the pet-care or animal health industry. For others, their job brings them to people’s home and if you are allergic to cats, you never know when you might have a hard time to carry through. It is time we find something more effective than medications that just treat the symptoms, something that is much more reliable and safe than desensitization.
An allergy to cats is usually not very subtle, making it fairly straightforward to diagnose. Most people will rapidly feel congested, sneeze or wheeze or have to rub their eyes if they are exposed to a cat. It also happens that one cat allergen is likely the culprit for more than 90% of clinically allergic people. Contrary to house dust mites where perhaps 3, 6 or maybe more different allergens might have to be targeted specifically, in cat allergy, tackling the one should do the trick for a large majority of people suffering from cat allergy.
The major cat allergen protein Fel d 1 is light and sticky. It tends to cling to everything for a long while. Therefore, you find it everywhere: in most households, in classrooms and most indoor workplaces. Allergy to cats is also a year-round problem. You can therefore conduct your clinical studies without having to care for the season which is not the case for pollens for example.
And cat allergy is often severe; it is frequently accompanied by allergy-related asthma which makes it impossible for some to stay more than a few minutes in a household with a cat before they become really sick. It is a serious health issue.
Angany is an emerging pharmaceutical company bringing a new generation of allergy immunotherapy products. Our new eBioparticle-Potentiated Immunotherapy™ approach is a first-in-class product, never before brought to clinical trials. Respiratory allergens such as the cat’s major allergen protein are generally not as likely to cause anaphylaxis, a severe allergic reaction, as would most food allergens like those involved in peanut allergy for example. In this regard, starting with a candidate-medication for cat allergy is viewed as a prudent first step before Angany endeavours to bring a food allergy vaccine such as one directed to peanut allergy to clinical (in human) trials.
Angany’s cat allergy therapeutic aims to bring an efficacious and safe treatment option for people allergic to cats and this through a convenient vaccination-type schedule of administration. We hope that millions of people will no longer have to take antihistamines and topical nasal steroids or asthma inhalers in order to be able to live with their pet. At Angany, our sincere hope is that people with respiratory allergy and allergy-related asthma can eventually do away with their symptomatic medications altogether. We aim to provide a reliable disease-modifying solution.
And you know what? Angany’s targeting cat allergy gives us an excuse to showcase pictures of cats on our LinkedIn feed, and this most professionally! Isn’t there anything better to draw people’s attention?