The Infectious Disease Research Institute (IDRI) and NanoPass Technologies Ltd. (NanoPass) today announced they have entered into an agreement whereby IDRI licenses NanoPass' proprietary MicronJet microneedle technology for the intradermal delivery of products against a number of diseases including tuberculosis, HIV, malaria, leishmaniasis and leprosy, among others. The financial details of the agreement are confidential.
NanoPass' single use, microneedles-based device can be used with any standard syringe to deliver liquid substance directly and consistently into the skin.
Intradermal vaccine delivery has been shown to induce a stronger immune response when compared to conventional administration methods such as intramuscular and subcutaneous injections. This is attributed to the relatively dense network of immune cells present in the skin, leading to a better stimulation of the body's defenses. As a result, intradermal delivery may enhance vaccine protection, facilitate development of novel vaccines for challenging diseases and allow for a reduction in the amount of antigen needed to stimulate a protective immune response.
"We are very excited to sign this license agreement with NanoPass," said Dr. Steven Reed, Founder and Head of IDRI's Research and Development. "NanoPass' MicronJet technology provides targeted delivery of the vaccine to specialized cells of the immune system. We have observed a similar immunostimulating effect with our adjuvants and we look forward to evaluating the combined potential of these technologies."
IDRI also plans to apply the MicronJet technology for the administration of diagnostic skin tests.
Because microneedles are very short, they do not reach the free nerve endings of the skin that are responsible for pain sensation, and therefore most substances can be administered with microneedles with less pain. Furthermore, the microneedles are so small that they are barely visible to the naked eye, making the MicronJet far less intimidating than a conventional needle - and perfect for children and needle-phobic patients.
Dr. Yotam Levin, CEO of NanoPass, said: "This agreement signals a new milestone for NanoPass and our MicronJet device. We are delighted to collaborate with IDRI so that this technology can be utilized in the most challenging infectious diseases that impede global health. We are excited that the MicronJet will be used to deliver innovative products targeting the needs of the poorest populations and hopefully protect many lives."
IDRI-Translating science into global health solutions
IDRI is a Seattle-based not-for-profit organization committed to applying innovative science to the research and development of products to prevent, detect and treat infectious diseases of poverty. By integrating capabilities, IDRI strives to create an efficient pathway bringing scientific innovation from the lab to the people who need it most. For more information, go to www.idri.org