Techulon™ Inc., an early stage life sciences company based in the Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, has signed an exclusive license with Virginia Tech Intellectual Properties Inc. to market a new theranostic transfection reagent. This new traceable reagent complements Techulon's currently marketed Glyocofect™ transfection platform and expands the company's offering in an $800 million market that is steadily growing at 15% annually. As pharmaceutical companies, clinical research physicians and diagnostic companies struggle to find new treatment options, theranostics are viewed as essential in optimizing medications for individual and sub-groups of patients. Techulon plans to bring the reagent to market for the benefit of health-related research and drug development.
“We are adding another biodegradable reagent for siRNA delivery later this year, and we will begin immediately to explore opportunities for this new Theranostic.”
Theranostic agents associate diagnostic imaging along with delivery providing the ability to monitor and tailor treatments in real time. At the nanometer or cellular scale, the researchers are able to track the polymers using sensitive microscopes, which capture the nanoparticle luminescence. At the sub-millimeter or tissue scale, magnetic resonance imaging is used to see where the nanoparticles are going.
"This new technology strategically complements our existing Glycofect DNA delivery reagent that has attracted a lot of attention from primary cell researchers," said Frank Akers, president at Techulon. "We are adding another biodegradable reagent for siRNA delivery later this year, and we will begin immediately to explore opportunities for this new Theranostic."
The licensed theranostic material was created by Theresa Reineke, of the Reineke group and associate professor of chemistry in the College of Science at Virginia Tech, and Joshua Bryson, principal scientist at Techulon, Inc.