GW researchers developed a cell therapy manufacturing platform that avoids genetic engineering and activates immune cells against multiple, patient-specific target antigens simultaneously. A sample of a patient’s cancer cells obtained by surgery or biopsy is treated with photothermal therapy (PTT) in vitro, delivered by Prussian blue nanoparticles (PBNPs) at an immunogenic thermal dose. Immune cells (e.g. T cells, NK cells) from the patient are then exposed to the PBNP-PTT-treated cancer cells in vitro to activate them against multiple patient-specific, tumor antigens. The activated immune cells are then re-infused to the patient. Preliminary ex vivo data and studies in xenograft animal models show superior specificity of T cells generated through this novel immuno-engineered platform against glioblastoma, over T cells generated through traditional methods.
Over 30% of such withdrawals are due to cardiac toxicity (pro-arrhythmic effects mediated by cardiac ion channels), therefore regulatory agreements mandate the testing of all new drugs for cardiac liability. GW researchers developed the first scalable automated all-optical system for high-throughput cardiac electrophysiology and electromechanics. The system includes a method for combined optical pacing and optical recording from a variety of primary and stem-cell-derived cells and tissues. This platform allows for active dynamic interrogation, such as robust pacing protocols that can reveal Vm, [Ca2+]i or contraction’s frequency response (restitution) and temporal instabilities. The researchers also developed “spark-cell” spheroids which can be used as a reagent that can be frozen, transported, and deployed on-site to confer optical pacing of cardiac cells.
Up to 80% of ovarian cancer patients develop resistance towards platinum based chemotherapy drugs which are most commonly used against cancer. There is an urgent need for therapeutic agents that overcome such drug resistance. We developed small molecule drugs that overcome platinum drug resistance in vivo and in vitro. These compounds inhibit Acidic nucleoplasmic DNA‐binding protein 1 (And1) or sentrin-specific protease 1 (SENP1) and re-sensitize platinum-resistant cancer cells to platinum drugs.
Note: No company is formed yet. Seeking entrepreneur to lead. Opioids remain an indispensable treatment for severe pain despite increased risk for obese patients with tolerance. Of particular concern is opioid-induced respiratory depression (OIRD), especially during sleep, due to comorbid obstructive sleep apnea common in obese patients. Naloxone is the only drug available that can reverse the adverse effects of opioids and prevent death. However, naloxone has limited use because it reverses analgesia and induces withdrawal. A preventive treatment for sleep-related OIRD that does not affect analgesia or induce withdrawal is critical in patients with obesity. GW and JHU researchers found that intranasal leptin can reverse morphine-induced apneas, hypoventilation, and upper-airway obstruction while enhancing analgesic effects in mice with obesity.
OT Bio aims to apply our patented intranasal oxytocin therapy to treat sleep apnea and protect patients from associated heart disease. The scientific leaders have complementary bench and clinical expertise that has enabled both understanding of oxytocin's mechanisms in the brain and human studies showing improved respiratory and cardiac functions.
(Update: $2.2M seed raise - 2021) Knee cartilage injuries in young active people have unique challenges that do not face older patients. The treatments need to be able to withstand intense activity and last for years. There is currently no gold standard treatment, with all solutions having significant drawbacks in price, recovery time, and/or longevity of treatment. Nanochon has developed a 3D printed synthetic cartilage replacement which is inserted with minimally invasive surgery and encourages new tissue growth, extending the lifetime of the treatment.