Firm aims to expand nanodrug pipeline for treating ovarian, lung, and breast cancers.

U.K. nanodrugs firm Midatech raised £6.3 million in a private investment round. The firm says it aims to use the funds to carry out clinical development of chemotherapeutic gold nanoparticles for the treatment of ovarian, lung, and breast cancers, and to support development of therapeutic vaccines by SynTara, a joint venture with Immunotope.

Midatech is exploiting its gold-nanoparticle drug delivery technology both in house and through collaborations with industry. The SynTara joint venture with Immunotope, established in July 2010, is focused on developing nanoparticle-based immunotherapeutic cancer vaccines for the delivery of peptide antigens. Midatech also has a collaboration with MonoSol Rx to develop products that combine its own nanoparticle technology with MonoSol’s PharmFilm® drug delivery technology. The MonoSol partnership is focused primarily on the development of gold nanoparticle-based insulin and GLP-1 products for the treatment of diabetes, formulated using the PharmaFilm drug delivery platform.

In November 2011 the firms were given given Swiss regulatory authority go-ahead to start a first-in-man study evaluating MidaForm™ insulin. The insulin product comprises ultra-small gold nanoparticles modified to bind and stabilize insulin and GLP-1, and formulated using MonoSol’s PharmaFilm technology, to enable transbuccal delivery. At the time, the firm said the study would be the first ever to evaluate solid core nanoparticles of this size and nature in humans. A GLP-1 diabetes candidate being developed using both the Midatech and MonoSol platforms is currently in preclinical development. 

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