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GEN News Highlights : Jul 27, 2010

CMC Biologics to Manufacture ProtAffin’s Preclinical-Stage IL-8 Decoy

Glycan-binding anti-inflammatory protein is designed to block activation of neutrophils.

ProtAffin appointed CMC Biologics as manufacturer for its lead preclinical-stage chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) candidate PA401. The contract with CMC’s Danish operations covers manufacture and supply of the drug for preclinical development and early clinical trials in COPD and related respiratory conditions.

ProtAffin is dedicated to the development of protein therapeutics targeting cell surface glycans that drive inflammatory processes and cancer. The firm’s CellJammer® technology is designed to identify modified human proteins that target protein-glycan interactions. PA401 is a glycan-binding decoy protein derived from human chemokine IL-8, which ProtAffin claims has demonstrated potent anti-inflammatory activity in both chronic and acute models of lung inflammation.

The protein is designed to bind to glycans with a higher affinity than wild-type IL-8, preventing IL-8-driven activation of neutrophils and inhibiting pathways that normally lead to chronic lung inflammation. The product has been granted orphan drug designation in the U.S. and Europe for the prevention of delayed graft function after solid organ transplantation.

ProtAffin’s preclinical pipeline also includes anti-inflammatory candidates PA508 and PA517. PA620 is the first application of ProtAffin’s discovery technology outside the field of chemokines and is currently in the discovery phase.