Cardurion Pharmaceuticals Licenses Clinical Stage Heart Failure Candidate from Astellas

Company expanding pipeline of novel treatments for cardiovascular

, 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)

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)


Stephanie Hutton, 910-726-1367