Yissum Signs a Collaboration Agreement with Aurum Ventures MKI
News Jun 29, 2009
Yissum Research Development Company Ltd., the Technology Transfer Company of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, announced at the ILSI-Biomed Israel 2009 conference, it has signed an agreement with Aurum, Ventures MKI, the technology investment arm of Mr. Morris Kahn, for the development of a nanotechnology controlled release drug delivery platform that increases the bioavailability of orally administered lipophilic drugs. The technology was developed by Prof. Simon Benita at the Hebrew University's School of Pharmacy.
Initially, Aurum will sponsor a pre-clinical feasibility study that will assess the safety and efficacy of the proprietary oral delivery of an existing drug for the treatment of solid tumors that is currently delivered intravenously.
Previous pre-clinical experiments on Tacrolimus, an effective drug which prevents the rejection of transplanted organs but is poorly and variably absorbed with marked intestine and liver metabolism, resulted in 2.4 times higher bioavailability.
"We are pleased to partner with Aurum on this exciting technology," said Yehuda Yarmut, Deputy CEO of Yissum. "The ability to deliver lipophilic drugs orally while bypassing specific potent barriers in the intestine and the liver carries tremendous potential. Prof. Benita, a seasoned inventor and entrepreneur and co-founder of Novagali SA, one of Yissum's most promising spin-offs, has once again demonstrated his ingenuity in developing a novel mechanism addressing many unmet medical needs."
Dr. Dan J. Gelvan, Managing Director for Life Sciences of Aurum Ventures MKI added, "We are very excited with the potential of the technology to offer a significant breakthrough in the oral administration of many drugs and encouraged by the pre-clinical results. We are looking forward to the results of the initial part of our collaboration which we believe will provide a novel more convenient and safer therapeutic approach compared to intravenous injections."
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