Sojournix is a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercializing novel therapies for the treatment of women’s health and neuroendocrine disorders.
We are developing SJX-653, a novel and selective neurokinin-3 (NK3) antagonist as a once-daily non-hormonal therapy for moderate to severe vasomotor symptoms (or “hot flashes”) due to menopause.
Prevalent among menopausal women, vasomotor symptoms (VMS) are characterized by sudden and recurrent sensations of intense heat or “hot flashes,” often accompanied by elevated heart rate, hidrosis (sweating), erythema (skin reddening), and the disruption of daily activities and sleep. An estimated 6,000 U.S. women reach menopause every day (over two million per year) and the majority of these women experience vasomotor symptoms. The median duration of vasomotor symptoms is approximately 7 years, while some women experience symptoms for much longer.
While hormone therapy is highly effective for treating VMS, FDA labels for hormone therapy products contain boxed warnings highlighting potential safety risks related to breast cancer, stroke, dementia, and other concerns. Available non-hormonal agents, such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors’ (SSRI) anti-depressants, have limited efficacy. We believe SJX-653 has the potential to address the high unmet medical need for a safe and effective non-hormonal therapy for menopausal VMS.
Vasomotor symptoms are believed to be caused by excessive NK3 signaling in the median preoptic nucleus (MnPO), the area of the brain responsible for regulating body temperature. During menopause, the decline in estrogen levels leads to an over-production of neurokinin B (NKB), an endogenous neuropeptide which binds to and activates NK3 receptors in the MnPO. By reducing the excessive signaling of NKB at the NK3 receptor, NK3 antagonism restores the body’s normal thermoregulation capacity, thus alleviating vasomotor symptoms due to menopause.
NK3 antagonism as a mechanism for treating vasomotor symptoms is clinically-validated, demonstrating efficacy comparable to hormone therapy. In addition, a human genome study revealed a genetic association between vasomotor symptoms and the TAC3 gene that encodes the NK3 receptor.
Sojournix controls global development and commercialization rights for SJX-653 and we have raised $70 million from leading healthcare investors.