ProtAffin AG, a biotechnology company developing novel biopharmaceuticals for respiratory disease, inflammation and oncology, today announced that it has been granted a key patent by the European Patent Office protecting its CellJammer® discovery technology, which enables the development of a new class of biopharmaceuticals. The Company has initially applied this technology to chemokines, a large class of pro-inflammatory and pro-migratory proteins, which can be modified using the technology, converting them into anti-inflammatory decoy proteins. The company's lead program based on this technology is PA401, a first-in-class biological that is in pre-clinical development for COPD and other lung diseases where neutrophils cause chronic lung damage.
Over 40 chemokines have been identified to date and they represent a high priority target class for a number of major pharmaceutical companies in respiratory disease, autoimmune/ inflammatory diseases (AAIDs), stem cell mobilisation, cancer and HIV. The CellJammer® discovery technology enables ProtAffin to discover and develop biopharmaceuticals with a novel mechanism of action which may avoid a number of the problems currently experienced by industry using more traditional modalities to target chemokine activity.
Prof. Andreas Kungl, CSO of ProtAffin commented: "We are very excited by this important broad grant of patent claims protecting our CellJammer® discovery technology. We have identified a novel way to down-regulate chemokine activity by using biopharmaceuticals based on decoy chemokines which target glycans. Our lead program PA401, a decoy IL-8 protein, has already generated exciting 2efficacy data in preclinical models of COPD, showing differentiated pharmacology compared to other established anti-inflammatory therapies. Following the broad grant of claims for our unique approach to discovering biopharmaceuticals in respiratory and AAID, we look forward to discussing with interested Pharmaceutical and Biotech companies the potential to collaborate in the discovery and development of differentiated biologics which could offer specific advantages over monoclonal antibodies and small molecule therapeutics."