Starpharma (ASX:SPL) has announced the initiation a new DEP drug delivery program with UK-based global pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca.
The DEP technology is used to improve the performance of pharmaceuticals.
The companies have an existing agreement signed in September last year covering the development and commercialisation by AstraZeneca of compounds directed at a defined family of targets using Starpharma’s DEP drug delivery technology.
The new agreement will see the application of the DEP platform to a further compound from AstraZeneca’s portfolio.
The new program is outside the scope of the existing license agreement and is in addition to the current programs.
“It is very pleasing to see a further expansion of our partnered DEP programs with AstraZeneca to evaluate new therapeutic candidates in addition to the existing license agreement,” said Dr Jackie Fairley, Chief Executive Officer of Starpharma.
“This new program is built on the success we have achieved with DEP in our current projects with AstraZeneca, and is further validation of the DEP platform and its broad applicability to different types of products. AstraZeneca is a tremendous partner and our collaboration has been a very positive one. We look forward to continuing to work closely with AstraZeneca on this new program in parallel with the ongoing projects under our existing license,” added Dr Fairley.
Preclinical and early clinical data have shown DEP versions of drugs to be enhanced in a variety of ways compared to the unmodified drugs. Starpharma has a number of internal DEP candidates, including DEP docetaxel, which is in the advanced stages of Phase 1 clinical testing. The company also has a number of important partnered DEP programs underway in which its DEP technology is being applied to partners’ drugs to improve product performance and formulation characteristics.