Yissum Spins-Off Nanolymf to Advance Breakthrough Liver-Bypassing Oral Drug Delivery Technology
News Jan 10, 2008
Yissum Ltd., the technology transfer company of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, announced the formation of Nanolymf, a biotechnology start up company dedicated to advancing a nanotechnology controlled release drug delivery platform that increases the bioavailability of orally administrated lipophilic drugs. Nanolymf was founded as a subsidiary of Shizim Ltd., a group of life science companies in Israel.
Nanolymf's technology was developed by Prof. Simon Benita at the Hebrew University's School of Pharmacy and is exclusively licensed from Yissum. Per the terms of the agreement, Nanolymf has acquired exclusive rights and Yissum will receive royalties, sublicense fees, and an equity stake in Nanolymf.
Nava Swersky Sofer, CEO of Yissum stated, "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 the 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.
Shizim, headed by Yossi Bornstein and encompassing, among its holdings, one of the leading clinical research organizations in Israel and the representation of one of the world's largest pharmaceutical companies, is an excellent partner for launching this new company"
Lipophilic drugs are poorly soluble in water, seriously limiting their bioavailability and clinical efficacy. In addition, when administrated orally 25% of these sensitive drugs cannot be absorbed because they activate an intestinal pump barrier and are metabolized in the intestines and liver. Therefore, currently many drugs present limited oral bioavailability or else are injected.
Nanolymf developed a controlled release drug delivery system that is able to bypass intestinal and liver metabolic filters, resulting in increased bioavailability following oral administration, without any alteration of the drug molecules. This system can allow changing the route of administration of highly lipophilic drugs from injectable to oral with high bioavailability and low side effects without affecting the normal physiological activity of the metabolic filters.
The patented technology was tested on animals, resulting in 2.4 times higher bioavailability of the model drug - Tacrolimus - in large animals, and is now ready for starting clinical trials on humans.
Yossi Bornstein Nanolymf's Founder, CEO and Chairman, added, "we are very excited at the potential of Nanolymf's technology to deliver a significant breakthrough in the oral administration of many drugs and encouraged by the extraordinary pre-clinical results."