Cirius Therapeutics is a clinical-stage pharmaceutical company focused on the development of innovative therapies for the treatment of liver and metabolic diseases. Cirius is developing MSDC-0602K, a novel, once-daily, oral small molecule for the treatment of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), which includes nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), with Type 2 diabetes. MSDC-0602K is designed to selectively modulate the mitochondrial pyruvate carrier (MPC), which mediates at the cellular level the effects of overnutrition, a major cause of NAFLD/NASH and other metabolic disorders.
Cirius was founded based on the discovery of the modulatory effect of thiazolidinediones on the mitochondrial pyruvate carrier (MPC), and the resulting improvements in cellular glucose metabolism, in which Cirius’ co-founder Jerry Colca, Ph.D., played a key role.
A recently completed Phase 2b clinical trial of MSDC-0602K demonstrated that MSDC-0602K can exert the full beneficial pharmacology of first generation insulin sensitizers without the dose-limiting effects caused by direct activation of PPAR nuclear receptors. Cirius is now planning Phase 3 studies with an emphasis on patients with NAFLD/NASH and Type 2 diabetes.