SBIR Award: Integrated BioTherapeutics
Integrated BioTherapeutics (IBT) has been awarded a Phase I Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), a division of the NIH. The company will receive $550,000 for work to take place over the next two years.
The award is entitled Development of Therapeutic Pan-Filovirus Macaque Monoclonal Antibodies and the principal investigator is Dr. Sven Enterlein, Assistant Director of Molecular Virology. Filoviruses, including the well known Ebola Virus, are classified as Category A Priority Pathogens by NIAID. No vaccines or effective therapies are currently available for use in humans against these viruses. In this grant, IBT will combine its proprietary engineered filovirus antigens with Trellis's CellSpot(TM) technology in order to isolate non-human primate monoclonal antibodies that provide broad protective efficacy. CellSpot(TM) is a powerful platform developed and patented by Trellis Bioscience, LLC. (www.trellisbio.com) which enables identification of rare, high-affinity natural antibodies. The CellSpot(TM) platform makes possible the screening of millions of B lymphocytes for antibody specificity and affinity, using multiplexed fluorescent beads bound to an antibody capture surface secreted as a microscopic footprint around each B cell.
"CellSpot(TM) is currently the most powerful system available for cloning rare favorable antibodies that meet a high threshold for specificity and affinity" said Dr. Larry Kauvar, Founder and Senior Vice President of Trellis Bioscience.
"As native products of an intact primate immune system, these mAbs are expected to be suitable for human use with only minor modification" added Dr. Javad Aman, President and CSO of IBT.
Selected antibodies will be produced at medium scale and tested for neutralization of filoviruses in cell culture followed by proof-of-concept testing in mouse models. Through insights from its filovirus vaccine development efforts, IBT believes it can develop effective therapeutics for infection. According to Dr. Aman, this collaboration has the potential to produce a valuable biodefense medical countermeasure.