Tuesday, September 23, 2014 Last update: 9:03 AM
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DART Therapeutics Changes Name to Akashi Therapeutics

Companies mentioned in this article: Akashi Therapeutics

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. -- (BUSINESS WIRE) -- DART Therapeutics, Inc., announced today that it has changed its name to Akashi Therapeutics to reflect its progress in developing a pipeline of product candidates to improve the lives of children with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). The new company name is derived from the Akashi-Kaikyo bridge in Japan which has the longest central span of any suspension bridge in the world. The name symbolizes how Akashi Therapeutics was created to save children’s lives by rapidly bridging the gap between promising science and effective treatments for Duchenne. Akashi Therapeutics combines the operations of DART and its subsidiary Halo Therapeutics, LLC, into a single entity. Simultaneous with the name change, the company has launched a new corporate website and URL: www.akashirx.com

“The Akashi bridge in Japan was built after a ferryboat accident caused many children to tragically die,” explains Dr. Benjamin Seckler, a company co-founder. “Like the engineers who built its namesake bridge, our company is pushing the envelope of what is possible to turn tragedy into opportunity. By focusing multiple drugs in our pipeline on the same indication, we are able to progress faster and more efficiently toward new therapeutics to save this generation of children with Duchenne.”

“Akashi Therapeutics combines DART Therapeutics and Halo Therapeutics into a single, purpose-driven entity to simplify and focus our operations on the goal of developing new therapeutics to treat Duchenne muscular dystrophy,” said Marc B. Blaustein, CEO of Akashi Therapeutics. “These include our two most advanced product candidates, HT-100, an anti-inflammatory and anti-fibrotic, and DT-200, a muscle builder.”

About Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD)

Affecting approximately 1 in 3,600 boys worldwide, DMD is the most common of the muscular dystrophies and the most lethal genetic disorder of childhood. It is caused by a genetic mutation that renders boys unable to make functional dystrophin, a protein critical for normal muscle function. Young men with DMD show progressive signs of physical impairment as early as age three, lose the ability to walk in their teens, and die of cardiac or respiratory failure in their late twenties or early thirties.

About Akashi Therapeutics

Akashi Therapeutics is a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company whose mission is to develop treatments for Duchenne muscular dystrophy and other rare pediatric diseases. Akashi was founded by leading patient organizations and biotechnology industry veterans and is managed by a seasoned team of drug development experts to impact a central problem in rare diseases: rapid therapy development. Akashi is developing a pipeline of therapies with the goal of transforming Duchenne from a 100% fatal, aggressive muscle-wasting disease to a chronic, manageable condition. For more information, please visit www.akashirx.com.

Copyright © Business Wire 2014

Akashi Therapeutics Contact:
Marc B. Blaustein, CFA, 617-431-7234
Media Contact:
The Yates Network
Gina Nugent, 617-460-3579