IL-22 is produced by activated immune cells in response to inflammation of infection and primarily acts on epithelial cells and stroma cells through binding to its receptors selectively expressed on the surface of these cell types. Once bound to its receptors, IL-22 promotes proliferation, remodeling, and repair of various tissues and organs to maintain innate host defense mechanisms that control the invasion of pathogens. IL-22 plays a broad role in protecting damages to barrier integrity and tissue homeostasis induced by a variety of pathogens such as viruses, bacteria, and chemicals.
IL-22 still remains a novel target without any drug launched on the market. However, numerous studies have shown the correlation between IL-22 and various inflammatory diseases. Evive is leading research in this field and is one of only two companies worldwide to develop an IL-22 drug through a Phase II clinical trial, along with Genentech (Roche).
Our leading drug in this field, F-652, is an IL-22-Fc fusion protein under development. F-652 is a recombinant fusion protein consisting of a human interleukin 22 (IL-22) moiety and a human IgG2 Fc moiety. F-652 is manufactured in Chinese Hamster Ovary (CHO) cells. It exists as a homodimer. F-652 is a first-in-class biological drug.