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Switzerland-based biotech firm Omnio has teamed-up with Canadian pharmaceutical firm ProMetic to develop a new drug for slow-healing chronic wounds.

The research will be led by Omnio founder and Umea University medical biochemistry and biophysics department researcher Tor Ny.

As part of the deal, the firms will provide funding for clinical studies of a drug based on the blood plasma protein plasminogen.

Plasminogen is a naturally occurring protein, which is synthesised by the liver and circulates in the blood. It is called as plasmin in its activated form, which involves in the lysis of blood clots and wound healing.

"Speeding up the healing of these wounds would mean a lot to the quality of life for the affected patients."

Under the long-term collaboration, the firms will establish research centre, which will be managed by Omnio in partnership with Umea University.

The research team is planning to start clinical studies with patients in the second half of 2016, which will examine whether the plasminogen will enhance wound healing.

The research will determine the role of plasminogen protein in the healing of various slow-healing wounds such as diabetic wounds and bedsore.

Tor Ny said: "My wish is that we will soon have an efficient drug speeding up the treatment and healing of chronic wounds, a large medical problem causing huge suffering. Speeding up the healing of these wounds would mean a lot to the quality of life for the affected patients.

"The troublesome, painful and slow-healing diabetic wounds can even lead to the need of amputating a foot."


Image: Omnio founder Tor Ny will lead the research on new drug for chronic wounds. Photo: courtesy of Umea University.