Development of an Exosome Therapy as a treatment for Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF).
IPF is an incurable, fatal disease affecting approximately 5 million people worldwide. Mean survival of patients with IPF is only 3-5 years. Existing IPF medications cost ~USD$96,000 pa (Ofev - nintedanib)
Lonza acquired HansaBioMed Life Sciences; South Korean venture ExoCoBio Inc has raised an $11 million Series A funding round within 4 months of its establishment, involving South Korean VC firms, SBI Investment, Atinum Investment, ID Ventures, and Dt&Investment
- IPF is a progressive, debilitating, and fatal lung disease characterized by interstitial fibrosis with decreasing lung volumes and hypoxemic respiratory failure.
- IPF represents the end result of failed epithelial repair in the setting of recurrent episodes of epithelial injury
- Exosomes are a stem-cell treatment; which have been shown to enhance epithelial repair in organs including lung, and have been shown to be effective in preclinical models of inflammation-induced pulmonary fibrosis.
- Exosome treatment is regenerative and highly effective in animal models of lung disease
- Considered the future of regenerative cell therapies and mediators of stem cell efficacy
- Broad patent across indications including lung (PCT 2016901349 filed June 2016), only patent granted for amniotic exosomes
- Strong animal model data supporting the use of exosomes in lung injury
- Endobronchial administered stems cells have been found to be safe in human trials of IPF (Tzouvelekis et al. 2015)
- No available therapies to halt progression of IPF. Unlike current anti-fibrotic medications, exosomes have pro-regenerative properties: potential to be curative
- No laboratory skills/ resources required for administration, can be handled like a drug
- The team has full access to animal and clinical facilities to sponsor research through to Phase 1
- An Inhaled delivery system as a treatment option