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Our lead projects

To move closer to our vision of a world free of pain, we are currently pursuing a range of programmes across different modalities, targets and mechanisms of action. Here are some selected highlights from our development pipeline.

Nociceptin/Orphanin FQ (N/OFQ) receptor agonist

Despite different treatment options being available, many patients with neuropathic pain still suffer from treatment non-response or insufficient pain relief. With our NOP receptor agonist programme, we are pursuing the development of a selective oral treatment with a unique mechanism of action for chronic peripheral neuropathic pain. This programme is based on many years of intense and ground-breaking research at Grünenthal in the field of NOP receptors, and creates a unique opportunity for a transformative first-in-class treatment.

Glucocorticoid Receptor Modulator

Glucocorticoids such as cortisone are known to be highly efficacious anti-inflammatory drugs. However, they come with several significant side effects that limit their use, particularly in chronic indications. With our GRM programme, we are pursuing the development of clinical candidates for oral treatment with broad anti-inflammatory efficacy but significantly fewer side effects than glucocorticoid-based therapies.

MPC-06-ID (Mesoblast collaboration)

More than 7 million patients in Europe suffer from chronic low back pain associated with degenerative disc disease. Many patients still suffer from significant pain after exhausting available conservative treatment options. Together with our partner Mesoblast, we are pursuing the development of a highly innovative mesenchymal precursor cell (MPC) therapy for patients with chronic low back pain associated with degenerative disc disease who have not found effective relief from available treatment options. This programme is in Phase III clinical development.


Qutenza™ is a cutaneous patch (capsaicin 179 mg/8%) that is approved for the treatment of peripheral neuropathic pain in Europe. In the US it is approved for the treatment of neuropathic pain associated with postherpetic neuralgia and for the treatment of neuropathic pain associated with diabetic peripheral neuropathy of the feet in adults. Our life-cycle-management efforts are targeted on expanding the label, particularly in the US, to make Qutenza™ available to even more patients in need. We are also considering additional lifecycle management ideas to further demonstrate the benefits of Qutenza™.