Ben-Gurion U. licenses drug delivery platform for central nervous system diseases to NY biotech firm

April 10th, 2012
BGN Technologies, the technology transfer company for Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU), has signed a licensing agreement for its V-Smart™ drug delivery technology with Lauren Sciences LLC, a privately held biotechnology company in New York.

Lauren Sciences will develop the technology as a platform for treating a variety of diseases that affect the central nervous system (CNS), including Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), as well as brain malignancies.

V-Smart™ technology is based on nanovesicles made of proprietary building blocks that provide high stability, large encapsulation capacity, targeting to specific cells and tissues, a controlled release mechanism, and passage through biological barriers, including the blood brain barrier (BBB). The V-SmartTM technology pinpoints where the drug will be released in the brain, increasing efficacy and reducing adverse effects.

It was developed by BGU researchers Dr. Sarina Grinberg of the Department of Chemistry, Dr. Charles Linder of the Department of Biotechnology and Department of Clinical Biochemistry Prof. Eliahu Heldman, who also serves as Lauren Science's chief scientific officer. Lauren Sciences will continue to conduct development activities at BGU.

"Our pre-clinical studies demonstrate that novel, nano-sized V-Smart™ vesicles encapsulate small molecules, peptides, proteins and nucleic acids, cross the BBB and release their encapsulated contents in the brain," said Prof. Heldman. "Our goal is to target, protect and restore dopaminergic neurons (nerve cells) in the brain that deteriorate during the course of Parkinson's disease. The success of this project should improve Parkinson's patients' lives."

The BBB is permeable for small molecules; however, an active drug delivery transport system is required for other substances. There is currently an unmet need and a great medical challenge for a safe, effective and reliable drug delivery transport system to deliver viable chemotherapeutic agents to the brain of patients with brain cancer or other CNS related clinical states.

The V-Smart™ platform is protected by several worldwide patents filed by BGN Technologies. Lauren Sciences was recently awarded a grant from the Michael J. Fox Foundation to develop a V-Smart™ therapeutic for Parkinson's disease.

Provided by American Associates, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev

This Phys.org Science News Wire page contains a press release issued by an organization mentioned above and is provided to you “as is” with little or no review from Phys.Org staff.

More news stories

Ancient clay seals may shed light on biblical era

Impressions from ancient clay seals found at a small site in Israel east of Gaza are signs of government in an area thought to be entirely rural during the 10th century B.C., says Mississippi State University archaeologist ...

Off-world manufacturing is a go with space printer

On Friday, the BBC reported on a NASA email exchange with a space station which involved astronauts on the International Space Station using their 3-D printer to make a wrench from instructions sent up in ...

Cadillac CT6 will get streaming video mirror

Cadillac said Thursday it will add high resolution streaming video to the function of a rearview mirror, so that the driver's vision and safety can be enhanced. The technology will debut on the 2016 Cadillac ...

Recorded Ebola deaths top 7,000

The worst Ebola outbreak on record has now killed more than 7,000 people, with many of the latest deaths reported in Sierra Leone, the World Health Organization said as United Nations Secretary-General Ban ...

Sony faces 4th ex-employee lawsuit over hack

A former director of technology for Sony Pictures Entertainment has sued the company over the data breach that resulted in the online posting of his private financial and personal information.