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Posted: April 22, 2008
First Commercial Product Launch of Starpharma's DNT Priostar
(Nanowerk News) Starpharma Holdings Ltd today announced the first commercial product launch based on its
Priostar® dendrimer technology.
The product, a research reagent kit called NanoJuiceTM Transfection Kit for transporting DNA into cells, was developed under a license and supply agreement established in February 2007 between Starpharma’s wholly owned US subsidiary Dendritic Nanotechnologies (DNT) and EMD Chemicals Inc., an affiliate of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany.
Under the commercial agreement, Starpharma retains full rights to all in vivo aspects of transfecting DNA and other nucleic acids such as siRNA with products based on Priostar® technology. Starpharma supplies the Priostar® dendrimers and will receive royalties from the sale of the transfection kits.
The NanoJuiceTM Transfection Kit launched by EMD Chemicals will be marketed to researchers as an improved product for optimal transfection efficiencies, low toxicity to cells and flexibility in the conditions of transfection.
In addition, the reagent is suitable for use with all types of cell growth media and does not require that the medium be changed after addition, thereby affording researchers substantial savings in time and money.
The transfection reagent in the kit is based on Starpharma’s Priostar® dendrimers, highly branched spherical molecules with a high concentration of active groups on the surface that bind to DNA and are taken up by cells. It is the only reagent available that has been optimized for different cell lines through the use of different sizes of dendrimer.
The kit was designed to achieve efficient transfection of mammalian cells, especially those derived directly from tissues (so-called ‘primary’ cells), as well as the cell lines that are traditionally difficult to transfect.
The kit consists of Priostar® dendrimers mixed with microscopic lipid-based spheres that carry multiple positively charged groups.
DNT expects EMD to launch a related siRNA transfection reagent kit later in 2008.
Starpharma Holdings Limited (ASX:SPL, OTCQX:SPHRY) is a world leader in the development of dendrimer nanotechnology for pharmaceutical, life-science and other applications. SPL is principally composed of two operating companies, Starpharma Pty Ltd in Melbourne, Australia and Dendritic Nanotechnologies, Inc in Michigan, USA. Products based on SPL’s dendrimer technology are already on the market in the form of diagnostic elements and laboratory reagents.
The Company’s lead pharmaceutical development product is VivaGel® (SPL7013 Gel), a vaginal microbicide designed to prevent the transmission of STIs, including HIV and genital herpes.
In the wider pharmaceutical field Starpharma has specific programs in the areas of Drug Delivery and Drug Optimisation technologies (using dendrimers to control where and when drugs go when introduced to the body) and Targeted Diagnostics (using dendrimers as a scaffold to which both location-signalling and targeting groups are added to allow location of specific cell type, such as cancer cells). More broadly the company is exploring dendrimer opportunities in materials science with applications as diverse as adhesives, lubricants and water remediation.
SPL has a comprehensive IP portfolio that comprises more than 224 patents/applications issued and pending across 56 patent families - a unique level of IP concentration among nanotechnology companies.
Dendrimers: A type of precisely-defined, branched nanoparticle. Dendrimers have applications in the medical, electronics, chemicals and materials industries.
American Depositary Receipts (ADRs): Starpharma’s ADRs trade under the code SPHRY (CUSIP number 855563102). Each Starpharma ADR is equivalent to 10 ordinary shares of Starpharma as traded on the Australian Stock Exchange. The Bank of New York Mellon is the depositary bank. Starpharma’s ADRs are listed on International OTCQX (www.otcqx.com), a premium market tier in the U.S. for international exchange-listed companies, operated by Pink Sheets, LLC.