AIT Raises $1.5 M for Lung Disease

AIT ( has completed a $1.25 million funding to enable the company to begin two clinical trials

Clalit Health Services, through its Soroka Medical Center in Beersheba, Israel, and Mor Research Applications Ltd., will participate in research and clinical trials.

The University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada, licensed the technology to AIT. AIT specializes in the development of formulations based on nitric oxide (NO) for infectious lung diseases. The company is owned by Mor Research Applications. Mor is involved in the management and commercialization of intellectual property for Clalit physicians.

Bronchiolitis, an infectious lung disease caused by the respiratory syncytical virus (RSV), is common in children and infants. It is a major cause of hospitalization and infant mortality. Approximately 200,000 children under the age of five in developed countries die every year from bronchiolitis. The disease affects the small airways in the lungs and is accompanied by a runny nose, cough, and high fever. It is particularly aggressive in infants, preemies, and others with compromised immune systems. In cases such as these, if the patient is not treated in time, the virus can cause very serious breathing problems, and may lead to death. Today, the standard treatment for bronchiolitis consists of supportive care only (oxygen inhalation, saline inhalations, and steroids) rather than treating the cause of the disease (the virus). Antibiotics are ineffective against bronchiolitis since, in most cases, it is viral.

Dr. Yossef Av-Gay, a director at AIT and a Professor at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada states, “NO is a gas that is produced in the human body and is responsible for a wide range of activities from the expanding of blood vessels to fighting infections. Now, for the first time, AIT is starting Phase II clinical studies after a successful Phase I trial conducted at the University of British Columbia under the supervision of Dr. Chris Miller. I believe that we are on the verge of a breakthrough in the treatment of lung infections with new drugs based on nitric oxide.” P

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