BlinkBio Inc., a biotechnology company advancing Tunable Drug Conjugates (TDCs) for cancer and other diseases, today announced the signing of an exclusive option agreement to license Dual Variable Domain-Fab (DVD-Fab) technology developed in the laboratories of Dr. Christoph Rader and Dr. William R. Roush at The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) in Jupiter, FL. The technology comprises engineered antibody fragments that include regions of antibodies that recognize target proteins they are designed to bind, together with elements that allow the DVD-Fabs to connect to BlinkBio’s proprietary TDCs.
“BlinkBio is developing TDCs that can rapidly release high concentrations of therapeutic payloads inside cancer cells, following which the TDC molecules are designed to be cleared from the body within hours, thereby delivering a strong therapeutic benefit while minimizing side effects,” stated Colin Goddard, Ph.D., Chairman and CEO of BlinkBio. “The addition of the Scripps’ targeting technology is a major step forward for BlinkBio, potentially allowing us to address any cell surface protein against which an antibody can be raised.”
During the option period BlinkBio will provide sponsored research funding to the Rader and Roush laboratories, and the BlinkBio and TSRI teams will collaborate on research projects to confirm the feasibility of using the two technology platforms in combination. BlinkBio and the Rader lab are both located within TSRI’s Florida campus, offering optimal opportunities for collaboration. Further collaborative projects are planned following the execution of the full license, including the generation of DVD-Fab TDC drug candidates and exploring the ability of TDCs to deliver multiple and different payloads within a single DVD-Fab TDC. The parties expect the full license to be executed within a year. Additional terms of the agreement were not provided.
“We are pleased to partner with BlinkBio in developing a promising new approach that we hope will result in more precisely targeted cancer therapeutics,” said TSRI Chief Operating Officer Richard King. “At Scripps Florida, we are committed to advancing science for the benefit of human health while supporting the region’s emerging biotech cluster.”
About BlinkBio Inc. and the Tunable Drug Conjugate (TDC) Platform
BlinkBio is a biotechnology company formed to exploit Bioorthogonal Linker (“BLink”) chemistries in our Tunable Drug Conjugates (TDCs) platform for the treatment of oncology and other diseases. The development of antibody (ADC) and small molecule (SMDC) drug conjugates has already provided a valuable contribution to the treatment of cancer by enabling the targeted delivery of therapeutic “payloads” inside cancer cells. However, there remains room for improvement. For example, ADCs can stay in the body for many days, creating a need for stable linkers to limit toxic side effects from systemic release of payloads, and there are challenges in making multi-payload SMDCs.
At BlinkBio, we have assembled a proprietary suite of assets for the development of Tunable Drug Conjugates (TDCs) that use a differentiated rapid payload release/rapid systemic clearance approach to drive high payload concentrations within tumor cells while minimizing toxicities to patients. The Company has deployed proprietary silicon-based linker chemistries to create a unique SiLinker and Payload Cassette platform for incorporation into our TDCs. The licensing of the DVD-Fab targeting capability from The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) provides a proprietary means of specifically binding a broad array of cell surface proteins with the aim of delivering powerful anti-cancer medicines inside the tumor cell and within the tumor microenvironment. DVD-Fab containing TDCs are also expected to be cleared from the body within hours, enabling better management of side effects.
BlinkBio’s business strategy is focused on developing selected TDCs through clinical development, while seeking partnerships with major pharmaceutical and biotech companies to broaden the utility and application of these novel drug conjugates in improving treatment outcomes for patients worldwide. The Company is located within The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) in Jupiter, Florida.
For more information, visit www.blinkbioinc.com.
Dr. Maneesh Pingle, 561-425-8120
Justin Jackson, 212-213-0006, ext. 327