Boehringer Ingelheim has acquired MacroDel biologics-delivery platform developer, ICD Therapeutics, for an undisclosed amount.
Boehringer Ingelheim, along with nanoPET Pharma, will use the MacroDel biologics-delivery platform to develop novel therapeutics. nanoPET Pharma is a former shareholder of ICD Therapeutics.
nanoPET Pharma managing director Dr Andreas Briel said: “nanoPET Pharma looks forward to collaborating with Boehringer Ingelheim on the pre-clinical refinement of ICD’s MacroDel to achieve effective intracellular delivery of macromolecules such as peptides and proteins.”
Engineered proteins and peptides will help block protein-protein interactions inside cancer cells, but their large size is believed to prevent intracellular delivery.
ICD’s MacroDel technology is said to deploy transporter proteins in the cell membrane to deliver such drug candidates inside tumor cells.
Dendrimers, tree-like highly branched molecules, serve as a fundamental component of the MacroDel platform.
The size, shape and electrical charge of the platform’s structure allow it to grasp large therapeutic biological molecules.
After binding with the biologic, the resulting compound selectively connects with transporter proteins, which are highly expressed on tumor cell wall membranes.
The transporters will transmit the compound through the membrane and into the cell. The positioned medicinal cargo will disrupt the disease process in an accurate manner at a molecular level.
Prior investment of Boehringer Ingelheim Venture Fund (BIVF) helped ICD to develop MacroDel technology.
Boehringer Ingelheim cancer research global head Dr Norbert Kraut said: “Boehringer Ingelheim’s collaboration with nanoPET Pharma has the potential to eliminate the hurdle that many cancer biologics face: getting access to targets inside tumor cells.
“We will use ICD’s MacroDel technology to develop first-in-class potential drug candidates for intracellular targets across a variety of tumor types, for the benefit of patients who so far have no or only inadequate treatment options.”
Established in 2010, BIVF invests in innovative therapeutics-focused biotechnology companies that involve in biomedical research.
Founded in 2008, nanoPET Pharma produces contrast media and also develops special contrast agents for specific applications in pharmaceutical research.