BEER-SHEVA, ISRAEL, April 10, 2012 – BGN Technologies, the technology transfer company for Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU), has signed a licensing agreement for its V-Smart™ drug delivery technology with Lauren Sciences LLC, a privately held biotechnology company in New York.
Lauren Sciences will develop the technology as a platform for treating a variety of diseases that affect the central nervous system (CNS), including Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), as well as brain malignancies.
V-Smart™ technology is based on nanovesicles made of proprietary building blocks that provide high stability, large encapsulation capacity, targeting to specific cells and tissues, a controlled release mechanism, and passage through biological barriers, including the blood brain barrier (BBB). The V-SmartTM technology pinpoints where the drug will be released in the brain, increasing efficacy and reducing adverse effects.
It was developed by BGU researchers Dr. Sarina Grinberg of the Department of Chemistry, Dr. Charles Linder of the Department of Biotechnology and Department of Clinical Biochemistry Prof. Eliahu Heldman, who also serves as Lauren Science's chief scientific officer. Lauren Sciences will continue to conduct development activities at BGU.
"Our pre-clinical studies demonstrate that novel, nano-sized V-Smart™ vesicles encapsulate small molecules, peptides, proteins and nucleic acids, cross the BBB and release their encapsulated contents in the brain," said Prof. Heldman. "Our goal is to target, protect and restore dopaminergic neurons (nerve cells) in the brain that deteriorate during the course of Parkinson's disease. The success of this project should improve Parkinson's patients' lives."
The BBB is permeable for small molecules; however, an active drug delivery transport system is required for other substances. There is currently an unmet need and a great medical challenge for a safe, effective and reliable drug delivery transport system to deliver viable chemotherapeutic agents to the brain of patients with brain cancer or other CNS related clinical states.
The V-Smart™ platform is protected by several worldwide patents filed by BGN Technologies. Lauren Sciences was recently awarded a grant from the Michael J. Fox Foundation to develop a V-Smart™ therapeutic for Parkinson's disease.
About American Associates, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
American Associates, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (AABGU) plays a vital role in sustaining David Ben-Gurion's vision, creating a world-class institution of education and research in the Israeli desert, nurturing the Negev community and sharing the University's expertise locally and around the globe. With some 20,000 students on campuses in Beer-Sheva, Sede Boqer and Eilat in Israel's southern desert, BGU is a university with a conscience, where the highest academic standards are integrated with community involvement, committed to sustainable development of the Negev. For more information, visit www.aabgu.org.
About BGN Technologies Ltd.
BGN Technologies is the technology transfer company of Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, responsible for the commercialization of know-how and inventions of the University's researchers. Through the development of novel technologies and creative partnering with industry and investors, BGN files worldwide patent applications and manages BGU's large patent portfolio.
About Lauren Sciences LLC
Lauren Sciences LLC is a privately held biotechnology company founded in New York in 2010. The company focuses on using the V-SmartTM drug delivery platform to create a robust pipeline of therapeutics consisting of central nervous system (CNS) active drugs that normally do not cross the blood brain barrier. Lauren Sciences exclusively licensed the V-SmartTM technology platform and intellectual property estate from BGN Technologies, the technology transfer company of Ben-Gurion University of the Negev.
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