Primary membranous nephropathy (PMN), also known as idiopathic membranous nephropathy, is a type of autoimmune glomerular disease and is one of the leading causes of non-diabetic nephrotic syndrome. PMN causes the body to lose considerable amounts of protein in the urine (called proteinuria) and can lead to impaired kidney function over time.
VB119, a potential treatment of proteinuria, works by lowering the activity of certain parts of the body’s own immune system that may be causing it to harm your kidneys and release protein in the urine. When the body loses a lot of protein in the urine, it can cause further kidney damage, poor nutrition, body swelling with weight gain, and feeling tired. The body’s immune system’s B-cells are designed to make proteins called antibodies that help to fight infections. However, in PMN, some of these B cells make antibodies that target the kidneys damaging the filters in the kidneys causing them to leak protein in the urine. VB119 is meant to decrease B-cells to stop them from making these antibodies and help decrease the protein in the urine. This should slow the worsening of kidney damage as well as improving the other symptoms of the disease such as fluid retention and swelling.