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Patent of the Week: Targeting the Treatment of Inflammatory Diseases

Patent of the Week

A biologic drug delivery platform targets the treatment of inflammatory diseases by honing in on collagen exposed by inflammation.

“Enhancing the therapeutic efficacy of drugs for inflammatory diseases is of high demand,” noted researchers, including Jeffrey Hubbell, Eugene Bell Professor in tissue engineering and deputy dean for development at the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering, in a paper published last year.

To improve the efficacy of these drugs, the researchers have invented a drug delivery platform that targets collagen to selectively deliver treatments to inflamed tissues. While collagen is not accessible in most tissues,  inflammation results in exposed collage, which enables this approach to work.

The platform – for which there is a patent-pending – reduces side effects, improves therapy efficacy, and could be applied to various diseases. It has been evaluated in mouse models of arthritis and idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.

In the study, the researchers demonstrated that the formulation enhanced drug retention at the inflamed tissue site, thereby enhancing its efficacy. “This is because collagen is universally and abundantly present around the vasculature and within the inflamed tissue but is exposed to the soluble components of the bloodstream only when hyperpermeability of the vasculature occurs, as in inflammatory tissue,” the researchers explained.

“Thus, collagen affinity as a drug retention method is neither tissue nor molecular expression specific and may be applied to chronic inflammation generally.”

// Read more:

Targeting inflammatory sites through collagen affinity enhances the therapeutic efficacy of anti-inflammatory antibodies – Sci adv; 5(11) 2019 Nov. 2019

// Patent of the Week is a weekly column highlighting research and inventions from University of Chicago faculty.

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