Our Approach

Tackling the roots of cardiac diseases

The heart is the central engine of the human body and cardiac dysfunction remains the leading cause of death world-wide. Heart diseases represent an increasing burden for families and the healthcare system globally with prevalence, hospitalization and mortality rates far exceeding those of other diseases. Current treatment options primarily alleviate the symptoms and do not address the underlying root causes, despite decades of research and development in all areas related to cardiac diseases and heart failure.

Healthy
Cardiac insufficiency
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy
Myocardial infarction

Non-coding RNAs: A new frontier in addressing cardiac diseases

Our goal at Cardior is to identify and counteract the molecular mechanisms of the broad area of ischemic-induced heart failure as well as specific cardiac diseases such as hypertrophic and dilated cardiomyopathies. Our innovation is based on a novel class of RNA therapeutics called non-coding RNAs that are able to act on several key disease pathways simultaneously, triggering a concerted therapeutic effect against key hallmarks of heart disease including:

  • Cardiac hypertrophy
  • Fibrosis
  • Impaired contractility
  • Reduced vascularization

Although non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs) are not translated into proteins, they are critical for the regulation of important cellular processes and their dysregulation is a hallmark of many diseases. With its deep knowledge in RNA biology, Cardior has developed a therapeutic approach to restore normal levels and functions of these critical players in the pathological processes of cardiac diseases.

How does it work in the heart?

Graphic of an human Human heart Healthy Cardiomyozyt Diseased Cardiomyozyt
Graphic of an RNA
Graphic of an RNA
Graphic of an RNA
Graphic of an RNA
Graphic of an RNA
Graphic of an RNA
Graphic of an RNA
Graphic of an RNA
Graphic of an RNA
Graphic of an RNA with Oligonucleotid
Graphic of an RNA with Oligonucleotid
Graphic of an RNA with Oligonucleotid
Graphic of an RNA with Oligonucleotid
Graphic of an RNA with Oligonucleotid
Graphic of an RNA with Oligonucleotid
Signalgradient green Signalgradient green Signalgradient green Signalgradient red Signalgradient red Signalgradient red Signal Signal Signal
Signal Symbol

Signaling
pathways

RNA Symbol

RNA

RNA Symbol

RNA bound by
Cardior's oligonucleotide

Healthy cardiac tissue
The proper contraction and subsequent relaxation of the cardiomyocytes is controlled by signaling pathways within the heart cells. Non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs) are naturally expressed by cells to regulate incoming and outgoing signals important for cardiac function.
The proper contraction and subsequent relaxation of the cardiomyocytes is controlled by signaling pathways within the heart cells. Non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs) are naturally expressed by cells to regulate incoming and outgoing signals important for cardiac function.
Diseased cardiac tissue
Their dysregulation, however, causes an imbalance in signaling, which can lead to detrimental remodeling of the cells. This subsequently impairs the heart function overall, causing it to fail.
Their dysregulation, however, causes an imbalance in signaling, which can lead to detrimental remodeling of the cells. This subsequently impairs the heart function overall, causing it to fail.
Cardior's treatment
Cardior focuses on the development of precise RNA therapeutics that are able to alter levels of non-coding RNAs, which include microRNAs (miRNAs) and long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs), and are able to halt and reverse the negative effects caused by the imbalance.
Cardior focuses on the development of precise RNA therapeutics that are able to alter levels of non-coding RNAs, which include microRNAs (miRNAs) and long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs), and are able to halt and reverse the negative effects caused by the imbalance.
Cardiac tissue normalization
The goal of Cardior’s therapeutic candidates is to restore the normal function of the heart cells. By targeting non-coding RNAs that are master-regulators of disease-specific pathways, we can achieve true disease modifying effects including anti-hypertrophic effects, anti-fibrotic effects, improved contractility, and restored capillary density.
The goal of Cardior’s therapeutic candidates is to restore the normal function of the heart cells. By targeting non-coding RNAs that are master-regulators of disease-specific pathways, we can achieve true disease modifying effects including anti-hypertrophic effects, anti-fibrotic effects, improved contractility, and restored capillary density.
Signal Symbol

Signaling
pathways

RNA Symbol

RNA

RNA Symbol

RNA bound by
Cardior's oligonucleotide

Our lead candidate

Our lead candidate CDR132L is an oligonucleotide-based inhibitor directed against miRNA132 (miR-132), designed to halt and reverse the development of detrimental cardiac remodeling. As a therapeutic candidate, CDR132L has several distinguishing features:

  • CDR132L selectively blocks aberrant miR-132 levels leading to the reversal of cellular pathology and restoration of normal function in cardiomyocytes; this contributes to improved cardiac systolic and diastolic function in patients with heart failure and could ultimately prolong a patient’s life span as well as improve quality of life
  • CDR132L is a highly stable water-soluble oligonucleotide formulated for parenteral or subcutaneous application

The program finished Phase 1b clinical development. We shared initial data in the European Heart Journal in 2021 and will start a Phase 2 trial soon. We are planning to conduct a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, proof-of-concept Phase 2 trial in post-myocardial infarction patients with heart failure with a readout expected in H2 2024.

Our pipeline

We are advancing a novel class of cardiac therapeutics with a unique and revolutionary mode of action. By modulating disease pathways at the cellular level, we are pioneering a restorative approach for a class of diseases which affect large portions of the population. Due to the lack of therapies that address the underlying causalities, the high level of medical need is yet unmet. Therefore, we will continue to develop and expand our therapeutic pipeline independently and together with partners.

Program
CDR132L
Indication
Post-Myocardial Infarction (MI) Heart Failure/ Heart Failure with Preserved Ejection Fraction
MoA
Interaction with miR-132
Development Stage
Phase 1
Program
CDR426D
Indication
Dilated Cardiomyopathy
MoA
Interaction with ncRNA
Development Stage
Preclinical
Program
CDR348T
Indication
Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy
MoA
Modulation of ncRNA
Development Stage
Preclinical
Program
CDR641L
Indication
Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy
MoA
Interaction with ncRNA
Development Stage
Preclinical
Program
Undisclosed
Indication
Diverse Indications
MoA
Interaction with ncRNAs
Development Stage
Preclinical
Discovery
Preclinical
Safety/Tox
Phase 1
Phase 2

The advantages of the Cardior platform

Based on world-leading expertise in the therapeutic modulation of RNAs through synthetic oligonucleotides
Deep understanding of the complex interplay of multiple disease-causing mechanisms and the role of ncRNAs
Pre-clinical proof-of-concept demonstrating the potential of the approach and first clinical evaluation successfully completed
Highly stable and effective RNA therapies resulting from a proprietary discovery engine achieving effective target modulation and targeted delivery into the heart
Successful scale up of a fast and cost-efficient GMP grade manufacturing