Synedgen has been awarded $2.73 million by the U.S. Army to develop treatments aimed at drug-resistant bacteria, particularly those that threaten U.S. troops injured in the battlefield. The aim is to develop a pharmaceutical product for infection prophylaxis and new methods to prevent and treat gastrointestinal (GI) disease by binding to and removing pathogenic microorganisms in the GI tract.
The money will be used to produce pharmaceutical-grade biopolymer derivatives and examine the efficacy of improved wound-care treatments in clinical trials. The products will be manufactured at Synedgen’s facilities in Honolulu.
Synedgen reports that its derivatives have potent antimicrobial properties against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria including those that are multidrug resistant. These derivatives also have the ability to dissolve biofilms including those on living tissue and inanimate materials.
Biofilms are nearly impervious to traditional antibiotics and are a significant cause of hospital infections in wound and surgery sites largely due to the persistent presence of these biofilms on hospital equipment. Synedgen says that its biopolymer derivatives are effective in disrupting biofilms of MRSA and multidrug resistant Acinetobacter baumannii, also known as Iraqibacter for its high rate of infections among troops injured in the Iraq war.
The company is also developing strategies that disrupt and remove potentially lethal bacterial biofilms from wounds, implantable devices, and skin. The firm is also working on oral rinse products that dissolve the biofilms in the mouth and presurgical rinses that reduce the bacteria that cause secondary infections in hospitals.
Synedgen also aims to develop treatments for gastrointestinal infections that result from overuse of oral antibiotics and treatments for pulmonary infections where biofilms limit the effectiveness of traditional antibiotics, block airways, and cause high mortality.
The company has a 3,500 square foot facility in Hawaii designed to manufacture its synthetically modified biopolymers for products under advanced development. The Hawaii lab has a class 10,000 clean room for GMP production.