Immune Pharmaceuticals Expands Immuno-Dermatology Development Portfolio

Immune Pharmaceuticals Inc. recently announced it has entered into a binding Memorandum of Understanding with Yissum, the Technology Transfer Company of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem regarding the worldwide exclusive licensing and development of a topical, biodegradable, nano-capsule formulation of cyclosporine A. Cyclosporine A, when administered systemically (Sandimmune, Neoral), is an effective treatment for psoriasis, atopic dermatitis, pemphigus vulgaris, and other severe inflammatory dermatoses.

“Following our lead product candidate bertilimumab in bullous pemphigoid, we are excited to expand our immuno-dermatology portfolio with an innovative topical formulation of cyclosporine A. Additionally, we are further strengthening both our nanotechnology platform and our partnership with Yissum, which already includes NanomAbs,” said Dr. Daniel Teper, the CEO of Immune Pharmaceuticals.

The topical nano-capsule technology and the application to cyclosporine A have been developed by the team of Professor Simon Benita, former Director of the Institute for Drug Research and Dean of the School of Pharmacy at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Professor Benita pioneered an ocular nano-formulation of cyclosporine A, approved for marketing in Europe for the treatment of severe keratitis associated with dry eye disease.

“We succeeded in incorporating cyclosporine A into biodegradable nano-capsules and have developed stable topical formulations able to achieve therapeutic cyclosporine A levels in the targeted skin layers. Cyclosporine A nano-capsule therapeutic effect was confirmed in two different animal models, which we believe may support a potential topical alternative to oral cyclosporine A, and to other topical immuno-suppressive drugs,” said Professor Benita.

Immune Pharmaceuticals Inc. applies a personalized approach to treating and developing novel, highly targeted antibody therapeutics to improve the lives of patients with inflammatory diseases and cancer. The company’s lead product candidate, bertilimumab, is in clinical development for moderate-to-severe ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease as well as bullous pemphigoid, an orphan auto-immune dermatological condition. Immune licensed worldwide rights for systemic indications of bertilimumab from iCo Therapeutics in June 2011, while iCo retained rights to all ophthalmic indications. iCo originally licensed the exclusive world-wide rights to bertilimumab in 2006 from MedImmune, the Global Research and Development arm of AstraZeneca.
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