Press Release

Enzychem Lifesciences Receives NASA Grant Funding to Evaluate EC-18 as a Protective Agent for Radiation and Pathogen-Induced Tissue Damage and Inflamm

By SpaceRef Editor
January 26, 2021
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Enzychem Lifesciences (KOSDAQ: 183490), announced today that NASA’s Human Research Program has awarded $150K in grant funding to conduct research on its lead compound EC-18, and how it impacts astronaut health and performance during future long-duration missions beyond low-Earth orbit. In this study, EC-18 will be investigated whether it can provide protection against both radiation and pathogen-induced tissue damage and inflammation.

The proposal was one of eight proposals selected by NASA, out of a total of 66 proposals submitted. Enzychem is conducting this study in collaboration with Dr. Cheryl Nickerson, professor at Arizona State University, who first demonstrated that some pathogenic microbes (Salmonella) exhibit enhanced pathogenicity in space and also pioneered use of spaceflight analog cell culture systems to develop 3-D biomimetic tissue models to study host-pathogen interactions. For more than two decades, her lab has worked with NASA to explore the effects of spaceflight on crew health and translate their results to better treat infectious disease both for astronauts and the public.

“We are excited to start 2021 with this grant funding from NASA, and we believe EC-18 could have protective effects against both radiation and pathogen-induced tissue damage and inflammation, based on its unique mechanism of action,” said Ki Young Sohn, CEO & Chairman of Enzychem Lifesciences. “We look forward to working with Dr. Nickerson’s team and sharing the results from this research study.”

The primary objective of the study is to evaluate the cumulative effect of both low-dose radiation and microgravity on the food borne pathogen, Salmonella Typhimurium on astronaut health using a 3-D biomimetic human intestine model.

Enzychem’s lead compound, EC-18, is an immunomodulator and known to facilitate the host’s intrinsic defense mechanism to holistically remove danger signals and pathogens and dampen the pro-inflammatory signaling cascades for early return to homeostasis. Due to its unique mechanism of action, EC-18 is currently in clinical development as a potential therapeutic candidate for Acute Radiation Syndrome, which has received FDA Orphan Drug Designation, Chemoradiation-induced Oral Mucositis, which has received FDA Fast Track Designation, and is in Phase 2 studies for COVID-19.

About Enzychem Lifesciences

Enzychem Lifesciences Corp. is a global pharmaceutical company focused on developing oral small molecule therapies for patients with unmet medical needs in oncology, metabolic diseases, and inflammatory diseases. Founded in 1999, the company’s proprietary compound, EC-18 is the subject of two Phase 2 clinical trials for chemoradiation-induced oral mucositis and COVID-19. EC-18 acts as an immunomodulator, facilitating the resolution of inflammation and early return to homeostasis. For more information, please visit

SpaceRef staff editor.