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ATyr Pharma Adds 7% On Receiving Orphan Drug Status For Its Lead Drug Candidate

Shares of aTyr Pharma, Inc. (LIFE) are rising more than 7% in the morning trade on Wednesday after the company received orphan drug designation from the FDA for its lead drug candidate, efzofitimod, for the treatment of systemic sclerosis.

Orphan drug designation provides certain benefits, including the potential for seven years of market exclusivity following regulatory approval, exemption from FDA application fees and tax credits for qualified clinical trials.

Efzofitimod is a potential first-in-class immunomodulator that downregulates innate and adaptive immune responses in uncontrolled inflammatory disease states via selective modulation of neuropilin-2 (NRP2), the company said.

"We are very pleased to receive orphan drug designation for efzofitimod for SSc, which marks the second such designation for our efzofitimod clinical program," said Sanjay S. Shukla, M.D., M.S., President and CEO of aTyr.

LIFE, currently at $5.06 has traded in the range of $3.50-$13.10 in the past 52 weeks.

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