Public Release: 

DesignMedix's malaria drug to enter clinical trials with support from NIH

Portland State University

(Portland, Ore.) April 10, 2017 -- DesignMedix Inc., a drug development company targeting drug resistant infectious diseases, has entered into an agreement with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) that will pave the way for first-in-human clinical trials of DesignMedix's malaria drug DM1157.

The agreement is with the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, part of the NIH, and builds on a strong package of preclinical data DesignMedix developed to prepare its malaria drug for clinical trials. Under the agreement, NIH will sponsor a Phase I clinical trial of the drug, which will test its safety for human use.

The trial will be conducted at Duke Clinical Research Institute in North Carolina, and is expected to commence in late 2017. The trial is expected to last about a year. Two more studies will be required before the drug can go to market - a process that will take five to six years.

"Diseases like malaria are a significant hurdle to the productivity, prosperity and health of millions of people around the world," said DesignMedix CEO Sandra Shotwell, noting that malaria parasites have developed resistance to almost every malaria drug currently available. "Our malaria drug is designed to overcome drug resistance. We believe it will make a positive impact on global health."

DesignMedix is housed in the Portland State Business Accelerator, the region's leading technology incubator and home to more than 30 promising technology and science startups. DesignMedix exclusively licensed the malaria drug technology from Portland State University. The drugs were designed to have two important functions: kill the malaria parasite, and block drug resistance.

The World Health Organization has identified emergence of antimalarial drug resistance as one of the greatest challenges facing malaria control today. The U.S. Congress established a significant incentive program, Priority Review Vouchers, to encourage development of drugs for tropical diseases, including malaria. In addition to being eligible for a Priority Review Voucher upon FDA approval, malaria drug DM1157 benefits from an Orphan Drug designation from the FDA.


About DesignMedix, Inc.

DesignMedix, Inc. was founded in 2008 to develop small molecule drugs to overcome drug resistance in treating infectious diseases. In addition to the malaria drug program, DesignMedix has early-stage drug development programs for additional bacterial and parasitic diseases. For more information please visit:

About Portland State University (PSU)

As Oregon's only urban public research university, Portland State offers tremendous opportunity to 27,000 students from all backgrounds. Our mission to "Let Knowledge Serve the City" reflects our dedication to finding creative, sustainable solutions to local and global problems. Our location in the heart of Portland, one of America's most dynamic cities, gives our students unmatched access to career connections and an internationally acclaimed culture scene. "U.S. News & World Report" ranks us among the nation's top 10 most innovative universities.

Contact: Ken Ma, Director of Media Relations,, 503-725-8789, @PSUinfoandnews
Sandra Shotwell, CEO, DesignMedix Inc.,, 503-348-0855

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