Diseases and Conditions

The Alliance for Children’s Therapeutics (ACT) is testing a new drug candidate, called dalazatide (formerly ShK-186), that would potentially be a safer, more effective treatment for a variety of autoimmune diseases that affect millions of people worldwide. These diseases include:


Lupus Nephritis

Lupus nephritis, is a serious complication of systemic lupus erythematosus.

When a person has lupus, the immune system turns against a person’s body and attacks its tissues and organs. Lupus nephritis occurs when overactive immune cells cause the kidneys to become inflamed, and about half of children with lupus suffer some kidney effects. It can cause patients to need a kidney transplant and increases risk of premature death. Up to 80 percent of children with lupus will develop lupus nephritis.

ACT is researching how dalazatide can impact and potentially alleviate lupus nephritis. This research is the first step toward clinical research studies that test the drug candidate in children. Learn more about dalazatide at Kineta.

Learn more about this condition on Medline’s lupus nephritis page.

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Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple Sclerosis, or MS, occurs when the body’s immune cells attack the myelin sheath that surrounds nerves in the brain and spinal cord, disrupting the nerves’ ability to carry electrical signals that tell the body what to do. Most people think of MS as an adult disease, but it’s increasingly being seen as a disease that starts in childhood — especially in the Pacific Northwest, where MS is more prevalent than anywhere else in the United States.

Dalazatide targets immune cells that are key players in MS. Preclinical tests suggest that it could be a potential treatment for MS.

Learn more about this condition on Medline’s multiple sclerosis page.

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Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA)

Arthritis is an inflammation of the joints that is characterized by swelling, heat, and pain. Arthritis can be short-term or can last a lifetime.

The most prevalent form of juvenile arthritis is juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA). It affects about 30,000 U.S. children. Preclinical tests suggest that dalazatide is a potential treatment for JIA.

Learn more about this condition on Seattle Children’s JIA page.

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Psoriasis

Psoriasis is a non-contagious disease that causes skin cells to build up on the skin’s surface, forming itchy red patches and thick scales. Psoriasis is a long-lasting condition that can get better or worse seemingly at random. It affects both adults and children.

Dalazatide is about to enter human testing as a potential treatment for psoriasis.

Learn more about this condition on Seattle Children’s psoriasis page.

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Psoriatic Arthritis

Psoriatic arthritis is a type of arthritis that affects children, teens and adults with psoriasis. People with psoriatic arthritis may experience joint pain, stiffness and swelling. The condition can lead to joint damage that can be disabling.

Dalazatide may be an effective treatment for psoriatic arthritis and will soon enter human testing for the condition.

Learn more about this condition on Medline’s psoriatic arthritis page.

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Asthma

Asthma is a lung condition that causes difficulty breathing and affects approximately 10 million children and teens. Symptoms include coughing, wheezing, and shortness of breath. Anyone can have asthma, even infants, and the tendency to develop the condition is often inherited.

Asthma flare-ups are the most common cause of pediatric emergency room visits due to a chronic illness.

Preclinical tests have shown that dalazatide can be an effective treatment for asthma in laboratory animals — a key step toward human research studies.

Learn more about this condition on Seattle Children’s asthma page

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