Targeting major depressive disorder with a novel mode of action

The Nelivabon program comprises the Phase- II-ready compound nelivaptan and a matching molecular diagnostic test targeting the 30% of Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) related to dysfunction in the human body’s stress system (HPA-axis) with a novel mode of action.

The neuropeptide vasopressin coordinates hormonal and behavioral adaptation to stress. Repeated stressors cause an elevated activity of vasopressin in the brain, potentially resulting in an increase of anxiety and a major depressive episode. BH-200 is an antagonist at the vasopressin V1b receptor, expected to be able to treat this dysfunction.

The clinical development is combined with a predictive companion diagnostic, which identifies depressed patients with an underlying dysfunction of the HPA-axis.

Those patients are then treated with nelivaptan, which has shown to be well tolerated.

Once clinically validated in conjunction with its predictive companion diagnostic, the Nelivabon program could represent a highly efficient treatment for those patients suffering stress-axis-related MDD.

The program is entering a Phase-II proof-of-concept study in H1, 2023.