Disorders linked to excessive cannabis use (AEF0117)
Aelis Farma is developing AEF0117, its first CB1-SSi, to fight Cannabis Related Disorders (CRD), a growing major global health and societal issue without available treatments today.
Excessive cannabis use can induce severe addiction and toxicity that can require visits to emergency rooms, of which cannabis-induced psychosis is the most serious manifestation.
The prevalence of these diseases is increasing in Western economies
There are an estimated 17.91 million daily or almost daily cannabis users in the main western economies (10 million in the US alone), of which 7.2 million have been diagnosed with Cannabis Use Disorders (CUD), the definition of cannabis addiction in the DSM-5 the major diagnostic manual of psychiatric disease.
In the US in 2014 there were 1.1 million visits to emergency room departments because of cannabis (double that in 2011). More recent data from individual states show a sharper increase in American states that have legalized cannabis (see the example of California in the diagram below).
Evolution in recent years of the number of cannabis users and emergency room admissions due to excessive cannabis use
1Data includes the European Union, the United States, Canada, and Australia.
Aelis Farma is developing AEF0217 to treat cognitive deficits, a major unsatisfied medical need of modern society.
The CB1 receptor is involved in several cognitive deficits, such as those associated with Down syndrome, Fragile X syndrome and also aging.
The first therapeutic target of AEF0217 is the treatment of cognitive deficits in Down syndrome (Trisomy 21) for which there is no available treatment.
Approximately 800,0002 individuals live today with Down Syndrome in the main western economies and Japan. The prevalence of this chromosomal abnormality has been steadily increasing because of two major factors: the increase in maternal age during pregnancy and the increase in life expectancy in Down syndrome people.
Cognitive deficits in Down Syndrome constitute the largest unmet medical need among neurodevelopmental disorders with a strong demand from families for a treatment able to increase the independence of their Down Syndrome offspring.
Evolution of the prevalence of Down syndrome and main causes
Aelis Farma aims to extend the indication of AEF0217 to other cognitive deficits such as those observed in Fragile X and aging.
2The European Union, the United States, Canada and Australia.