Unique Drug Candidate for Treatment and Prevention of Huntington’s Disease
|Coordinator||Karolinska Institutet - Department of Laboratory Medicine|
|Funding from Vinnova||SEK 1 000 000|
|Project duration||June 2018 - June 2019|
|Venture||Swelife and Medtech4Health- Project proposals to improve health|
|Call||Förbättrad prevention, diagnos och behandling – Swelife och Medtech4health|
Purpose and goal
The project’s aim is to develop a treatment for Huntington’s disease (HD) through the use of our technology, which is based on oligonucleotides, i.e. short sequences of synthetic nucleotides, which directly bind to the disease gene. The treatment is expected to delay disease development. There are two major strategies, industrial development of the treatment procedure in parallel with academic research, where we investigate the effect of chemically modified oligonucleotides on the down-regulation of disease gene expression in different cell models.
Expected results and effects
The focus has been on business development of the innovation as well as lead optimization and validation of our treatment procedure in different disease models. We have an ongoing discussion with several potential collaborative partners from the pharmaceutical industry. At the same time the experimental part has yielded good results in the form of continued development of the method in HD patient cell models. We have validated the treatment procedure and made preparations for its use in HD animal models.
Planned approach and implementation
We have developed an innovative treatment strategy for HD. We have established a biological drug candidate, an oligonucleotide, for which we already have proof-of-concept. This medicine binds directly to the hereditary material, DNA, and blocks the expression of both toxic RNA and protein. We focus on establishing a durable R&D strategy with the ambition to take the product all the way to the market. A strength is that our product is unique in the sense that only our invention enables blocking of toxic RNA and that it also may result in disease prevention.