Loxbridge Research has teamed up with Nobel Prize winner Dr Kary Mullis to develop therapeutics that combat antibiotic-resistant bugs.
The joint venture has formed Altermune Technologies to treat resistant pathogens like MRSA, C. difficile, Pseudomonas, and pandemic influenza.
Loxbridge will provide a seed-funding package worth $7m, offering a revolution in anti-pathogen therapy – a space that has lacked the investment and innovation necessary to combat multi-drug resistant strains in recent years, the company said in a statement.
The Altermune method is designed to re-task antibodies already present in the body that are not ordinarily tasked to fight infections.
The therapy uses ‘linker’ molecules to redirect the antibodies to selected pathogens and, once attached to the pathogen, activate a full immune response.
Under the joint venture, Mullis, the inventor of the polymerase chain reaction, will take on the role of chief scientific officer in charge of scientific development and innovation.
Dr Charles Roberts, CEO of Loxbridge, will become president of Altermune for the initial developmental period, supported by in-house executives.
"The Altermune project provides a very broad platform of therapeutic opportunities against a range of pathogens, with some compelling preclinical proof of concept," said Roberts. "We are interested in new partnerships with leading microbiologists and virologists to help expand the breadth of our pipeline.
"We are also in the process of pursuing several large grant applications to leverage our commercial investment and allow us to address new pathogens."