Genisphere Closes $2 Million to Accelerate Development of Targeted Drug Delivery Platform
Genisphere LLC, provider of the 3DNA® nanotechnology platform, reported today it has closed $2 million in private funding from existing investors, including Corporate Fuel Partners, a New York fund. This round of fundraising will accelerate Genisphere's targeted drug delivery initiative, following key milestones including the company's demonstration of cell-specific (cytosolic and nuclear) delivery of drugs with functional intracellular effects without apparent toxicity.
"3DNA nanotechnology is a versatile and unique delivery platform with potentially diverse and enormously important medical applications,” noted Vladimir Muzykantov, MD, PhD, Director of the Center for Targeted Therapeutics and Translational Nanomedicine (CT3N) at the University of Pennsylvania.
“Genisphere has created an impressive portfolio of joint projects to identify the most promising leads and expand the evolving practical applications beyond the initial prototypes,” he added. “Genisphere’s corporate membership in CT3N offers it direct access to leading experts in the field; indeed, University of Pennsylvania counterparts have been intrigued by delivery opportunities provided by 3DNA technology.”
Genisphere established these key collaborations to generate preclinical data showing the versatility and efficacy of the 3DNA platform in targeted delivery of small drugs, biologics, and nucleic acids. Last year, Genisphere announced its first research collaboration agreement with MultiCell Technologies, Inc. (OTC: MCET), which is investigating the use of the 3DNA platform to help facilitate the targeted delivery of their lead drug candidate, MCT485, for the treatment of primary hepatocellular carcinoma. The number of collaborations has now grown to more than 25 and includes several projects with large pharmaceutical companies.
"Pre-clinical data have demonstrated specific targeting of tumors, selective killing of targeted cells, tumor shrinkage, and no observed toxicity," said Bob Getts, Genisphere’s Chief Science Officer. According to Getts, key milestones achieved included excellent biodistribution profiles, transport across the blood-brain barrier, and specific accumulation in targeted tumors.
Getts also pointed out the flexibility of the 3DNA platform to deliver hundreds of tracking labels to targeted tissues, providing pharma companies with an option to incorporate a companion diagnostic into the drug development process. He summarized, "This round of funding will accelerate our joint efforts with our current collaborators, and gives Genisphere the resources to support additional partnerships." Genisphere also plans to advance its own lead oncology compounds based on the 3DNA drug delivery platform.
Genisphere LLC is the provider of the 3DNA® platform for targeted drug delivery. 3DNA® is a nanoscale, multivalent scaffold made from proprietary, synthetic DNA formed in a flexible, branched structure. 3DNA® nanocarriers are engineered and cross-linked to form a stable architecture while maintaining the biocompatibility of the nucleic-acid building blocks, and demonstrate efficacy and safety with a variety of drug cargos across multiple indications. Genisphere's technology is IP-protected and fully customizable to deliver small molecules, biologics, and nucleic acids with precise specificity enabled by multivalent targeting via antibodies, peptides and other molecular entities. Genisphere leverages a collaborative model to advance its 3DNA® drug delivery platform, and seeks additional partnerships with biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies to improve efficacy and reduce toxicity. Genisphere is also advancing its own lead compounds based on 3DNA® nanotechnology. For more information, please visit http://genisphere.com.