INV104 (zafirlukast) is a leukotriene receptor antagonist (LTRA) or anti leukotriene that works by blocking the action of leukotrienes, which are chemicals released by the body as part of the inflammation response. In the lungs, leukotrienes cause the muscles lining the airways to contract, thereby making the airways narrower. They also cause inflammation of the lining of the airways, which results in increased mucus production and further narrowing of the airway.
By blocking the actions of leukotrienes, zafirlukast prevents the increased mucus production, inflammation and narrowing of the airways that occurs in asthma – this helps prevent asthma attacks from occurring.
Zafirlukast is currently used as a regular oral treatment to prevent asthma attacks, rather than to treat them. The oral version of this drug is a first-in-class anti-leukotriene, which has shown in seven clinical trials an attractive safety and efficacy profile when delivered by inhalation at <1% of the oral dose.
Invion’s development program is centred on developing zafirlukast as a novel non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory treatment for asthma.