Novan Therapeutics has inked a deal with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to advance the development of a nitric oxide-based therapy as a topical treatment for thermal burns. The Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) awarded this contract and will provide funding of $7.8 million over two years.

According to the company, the project is designed to enable the future clinical investigation of the medical countermeasure and will support development of the Nitric Oxide Advanced Healing, or NOAH, technology including formulation work, nonclinical toxicology, and proof of concept studies in models of deep partial thickness and full thickness thermal injuries.

“The challenge is to create stable nitric oxide drugs that ‘perform on command’ and deliver a controlled, sustained dose that will supplement the body’s ability to regenerate tissue,” said Nathan Stasko, president of Novan. “Our platform technology has allowed us to pursue the development of drugs intended to harness the healing power of nitric oxide with results extending far beyond bioterrorism.”

Novan’s existing efforts include developing nitric oxide therapies for combat casualties, multidrug resistant infections, and chronic wounds. The company has evaluated the effects of topical nitric oxide therapies in several porcine wound models. Additionally, in May, Novan Therapeutics presented results from a Phase 1 trial demonstrating that nitric oxide releasing drug candidate SB204 reduced colonization of the acne causing bacteria Propionibacterium acnes.

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