Funds are part of a five-year contract with the NIH.
NIH awarded MDRNA $350,000 to develop siRNAs to prevent and treat influenza. The funds are part of a five-year grant totaling $1.9 million that the NIH awarded MDRNA in September 2006.
“We will use these funds to confirm that MDR-03030, our lead Dicer substrate siRNA candidate against human and avian influenza strains, is optimally designed to target the conserved region of the influenza viral genome and thus minimizes the virus’ ability to mutate around the compound,” says Michael V. Templin, Ph.D., vp for toxicology and pharmacology.
MDRNA explains that it is pairing highly potent and broadly-active Dicer substrate siRNAs against influenza with its DiLA2 Platform, which creates novel lipids from amino acids.
In preclinical models of influenza, MDRNA has reported efficient intranasal delivery of highly potent Dicer substrate siRNAs with DiLA2-based formulations, which resulted in a 100 to 1,000-fold reduction in viral titers, decreased clinical signs, and increased survival.