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Cardurion Pharmaceuticals Licenses Clinical Stage Heart Failure Candidate from Astellas

Company expanding pipeline of novel treatments for cardiovascular disease

CAMBRIDGE, MASS. – [April 16, 2018] – Cardurion Pharmaceuticals, a biotechnology company focused on the development of novel, next-generation therapeutics for the treatment of cardiovascular diseases, today announced it has entered an exclusive licensing agreement with Astellas to develop and commercialize CRD-733, a PDE-9 inhibitor with the potential to improve cardiac function in heart failure patients.

Under the terms of the agreement, Astellas has granted Cardurion Pharmaceuticals an exclusive, worldwide, royalty-bearing license, to research, develop, manufacture and commercialize CRD-733 for the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of cardiovascular-related indications in humans.

Heart failure is a chronic, progressive syndrome in which the heart is unable to adequately meet the body’s needs for blood and oxygen, resulting in shortness of breath, fatigue, and fluid retention. Heart failure can occur with either a weak heart muscle that cannot adequately eject blood, or a muscle that is strong enough, but other factors limiting its ability to fill or increase function, as needed, are impaired. Over 6 million people in the United States have one of these two forms of heart failure1, and this unmet medical need poses the greatest challenge in cardiovascular medicine today. Recent evidence supports that inhibition of PDE-9 has potential to restore heart-protective mechanisms that are dysfunctional in both forms of heart failure.

“Heart failure is an expanding global problem that remains one of the major unmet medical needs in cardiovascular disease,” said David Kass, M.D., scientific advisor at Cardurion Pharmaceuticals and professor of medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, who first discovered the key role of PDE-9 inhibition in heart failure. “PDE-9 is abnormally elevated in human failing hearts, which can impede a natural protective pathway and make the heart more vulnerable to damage. In our studies, inhibiting PDE-9 was able to prevent and reverse heart malfunction brought on by abnormal stress. Inhibiting PDE-9 in patients has the real potential to treat multiple forms of heart failure2.”

“Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death worldwide in both men and women, accounting for over 17 million deaths per year3,” said Daniel Bloomfield, chief executive officer of Cardurion Pharmaceuticals. “We are pleased to enter this agreement with Astellas to develop and commercialize CRD-733 and provide a new therapeutic option to heart failure patients. We look forward to advancing CRD-733 into further clinical development in 2018.”


About Cardurion Pharmaceuticals

Cardurion is a biotechnology company with both clinical and preclinical programs focused on the development of novel, next-generation therapeutics for the treatment of heart failure and other cardiovascular diseases. Led by two physician-scientists with extensive experience in cardiovascular science, medicine and drug development, Cardurion’s unique programs and strongly collaborative environment enable the company to deliver promising treatments that target major unmet needs. Cardurion has facilities in Cambridge, Massachusetts and Shonan, Japan. For more information, please visit the company’s website at


About Astellas
Astellas Pharma Inc., based in Tokyo, Japan, is a company dedicated to improving the health of people around the world through the provision of innovative and reliable pharmaceutical products. Astellas focuses on Urology, Oncology, Immunology, Nephrology and Neuroscience as prioritized therapeutic areas while advancing new therapeutic areas and discovery research leveraging new technologies/modalities. Astellas is also creating new value by combining internal capabilities and external expertise in the medical/healthcare business. Astellas is on the forefront of healthcare change to turn innovative science into value for patients. For more information, please visit our website at


Cardurion’s Forward Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements, all of which are qualified in their entirety by this cautionary statement. Any statements contained herein that do not describe historical facts, including, but not limited to, statements that express or imply future outcomes of our partnership with Takeda, are forward-looking statements that are based on management’s expectations and are subject to certain factors, risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results, outcomes, timing and performance to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such statements. These factors, risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to: the costs and uncertainties associated with our research efforts and other discovery activities; the inherent uncertainties associated with the conduct, timing and results of preclinical and clinical studies of our product candidates; and the adequacy of our capital resources and availability of additional funding. Except as otherwise noted, these forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of this press release, and we undertake no obligation to update or revise any of such statements to reflect events or circumstances occurring after this press release. We caution readers not to place undue reliance on the forward-looking statements contained in this press release.

The safety and efficacy of the agent discussed herein are under investigation and have not been established. There is no guarantee that the agent will receive regulatory approval and become commercially available for the uses being investigated. Information about pharmaceutical products (including products currently in development) which is included in this press release is not intended to constitute an advertisement or medical advice.


1 American Heart Association, Causes and Risks for Heart Failure (February 2018)

2 Lee, D. et al. Phosphodiesterase 9A controls nitric-oxideindependent cGMP and hypertrophic heart disease. Nature. 519, 472-476 (2015)

3 World Health Organization, Cardiovascular diseases (May 2017)


Media Contact for Cardurion
Stephanie Hutton
+1 910.726.1367

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