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Posted: Sep 25, 2012
Ensysce Biosciences Inc. Receives Small Business Grant from NIH to Optimize Single Walled Carbon Nanotube Formulation for Therapeutic Delivery of siRNA
(Nanowerk News) Ensysce Biosciences Inc. announced today they have received a SBIR award of roughly $300,000 to optimize the formulation of their single walled carbon nanotube (SWCNT)/siRNA complex for therapeutic delivery. These funds, along with the recent $1 million dollars that were raised in June and the State of Texas Emerging Technology Funds that had been awarded previously, will allow the finalization of the formulation prior to undertaking Investigational New Drug (IND) enabling studies.
siRNA is one of the most intriguing and promising approaches to cancer therapy, but adequate cellular delivery has been an issue. The SBIR award will aid the preclinical development of this ground breaking delivery technology. With completion of the studies, the Ensysce product will be poised to complete an IND application and bring SWCNT delivery of siRNA rapidly into clinical development.
Carbon nanotubes provide a means to deliver unmodified, large active molecular agents through natural barriers within the body and specifically into cancer cells. “The siRNA delivery into tumors by SWCNT and biological activity have been conclusively and repeatedly demonstrated in our animal studies. With the finalization of our formulation, our drug product will be taken through late preclinical development into human studies,” said Dr. Kirkpatrick, CEO of Ensysce. “The studies funded by the NIH will complete the last stage of our product selection and we will move in to the safety studies required by the FDA to enter clinical trials.”
Ensysce is located in the Biotechnology Commercialization Center in the Texas Medical Center, a site that aids its research collaborations with Rice University. “The research by Ensysce continues to demonstrate the utility of this approach for siRNA delivery,” said Dr. R. Bruce Weisman, Professor of Chemistry at Rice University. “Ensysce is leading the way in showing that carbon nanotubes can effectively deliver these macromolecules and provide biological activity in tumor models.”
About Ensysce Biosciences
Ensysce Biosciences, a Houston, TX-based nanotechnology company, is focused on the use of carbon nanotubes for therapeutics in the area of cancer treatment. The company has an extensive carbon nanotube-related, worldwide intellectual property portfolio, including IP developed at Rice University by the late Nobel Prize winner Dr. Rick Smalley.