BNC210BNC210 Vials

Bionomics' first in class small molecule BNC210, is a negative allosteric modulator of the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in development for the treatment of anxiety disorders, co-morbid anxiety and depression. 

Single doses of BNC210 have been evaluated in Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD) patients in a fMRI study with the emotional faces task, and a behavioural study with the joystick operated runway task. Lorazepam was used as a positive control in this trial. BNC210 treatment reduced bi-lateral amygdala reactivity to fearful faces relative to placebo and was more effective than lorazepam.  Similarly, in the behavioural task, BNC210 reduced threat avoidance behaviour in the GAD patients and again outperformed anxiety-related behaviours with equivalent efficacy to lorazepam. 

A Phase 2 Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) trial enrolled 193 adult patients across sites in the US and Australia. Results from the study showed that BNC210 did not significantly improve the symptoms of PTSD when compared to placebo. However, an exposure-response relationship was modelled from the trial data and established the potential for BNC210 to have significant benefit in PTSD provided that adequate exposure levels are achieved in the patients. Bionomics will be seeking FDA guidance on next steps for BNC210 in PTSD, including the design of a further trial.

BNC210 was also evaluated in a pilot Phase 2 study to assess behavioural effects of BNC210 on agitation in hospitalised elderly patients and to assess the safety and tolerability of BNC210 in this population.  

BNC210 lacks the side effects seen with benzodiazepines e.g., it is not sedating, does not cause memory or motor impairment and is not addictive. In preclinical studies, BNC210 has been safe and efficacious in animal models of anxiety with equivalent efficacy to benzodiazepines. It has also shown antidepressant activity in the rat forced swim test and enhances fear extinction in a mouse model of contextual fear conditioning. 

Bionomics is seeking a partner to take BNC210 into Phase 3 studies and to market. 


The BNC375 program is developing small molecule therapeutics for the treatment of cognitive impairment in Alzheimer's disease (AD).  These molecules may be applicable to other neurodegenerative and psychiatric diseases where there is a need to restore memory function such as Parkinson's disease, schizophrenia and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Compounds produced in this program have been effective in several animal models of impaired learning and memory over a broad dose range, and have an excellent safety profile.

In June 2014 Bionomics entered into an exclusive Research Collaboration and License Agreement with Merck, known as MSD outside the United States and Canada, for the BNC375 program targeting cognitive dysfunction associated with Alzheimer's disease and other central nervous system conditions.

Alzheimer's is the most common type of dementia and thought to be caused by damage to nerve cells in the brain. Symptoms are characterised by a decline in memory or other thinking skills; it affects a person's everyday activities and is fatal. One in nine Americans older than 65 years has Alzheimer's disease (5 million people). It is the 6th leading cause of death in the United States. By 2025 the number of Americans aged 65 and older with Alzheimer's is forecast to rise 40% to 7.1 million (2014 Alzheimer's disease, Alzheimer's Association). More than 332,000 Australians suffer from Alzheimer's disease.