iBio produces two therapeutic human proteins using plant biomass platform Print E-mail
By Brad Lemaire-Proactiveinvestors.com   
Monday, 11 July 2011 22:30
Biotechnology company iBio (AMEX: IBO) announced Monday the successful production of human plasma proteins using its proprietary iBioLaunch technology.

The Newark, Delaware-based company said alpha 1-antitrypsin and the C1 esterase inhibitor were successfully produced at high yield in green plants, using the company's iBioLaunch technology.

The iBioLaunch platform is a time-efficient and less costly process of making proteins for pharmaceutical and vaccine product applications, using plant biomass.

Both of the proteins are important therapeutic products, but until now they have been made from human blood, the company said in a statement.

iBio said results were realized through its ongoing development program, whereby various product candidates are being advanced toward regulatory approval on the iBioLaunch platform.

"The efficiency of iBio's technology offers traditional plasma protein producers the opportunity to move away from reliance on the human blood supply and introduce recombinant alternatives free of any animal or human cell or tissue components," said iBio’s chairman and CEO, RobertKay.

"This is particularly important to physicians and patients since products made from human blood may contain infectious agents such as viruses that can cause disease," added Kay.

Plasma-derived C1 esterase inhibitor, which is an orphan drug approved by the FDA, is used to treat and prevent the symptoms of hereditary angioedema.

Hereditary angioedema is caused by low levels or improper function of a protein called C1 inhibitor, affecting the blood vessels. People with the disease can develop rapid swelling of the hands, feet,limbs, face, intestinal tract, larynx or trachea.

Annual global sales of hereditary angioedema treatments are expected to surpass $1 billion as new treatment options penetrate the market.

Additionally, plasma-derived alpha 1-antitrypsin is supplied by many companies for treatment of emphysema. A number of preclinical and clinical research programs hint it may also be useful in the treatment for diabetes and certain types of asthma. Sales globally for alpha 1-antitrypsin are about $500million.

With its iBioLaunch plant platform, the company is looking to develop biologics, monoclonal antibodies, therapeutics and vaccines. It expects to establish commercial relationships in each of these markets.

iBio is focused on commercialization of plant-made products for the prevention and treatment of serious infectious diseases. Currently, the company is developing and producing plant-made human recombinant antibodies for treatment of influenza and anthrax.

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