16 December, 2021- Poolbeg Pharma (AIM: POLB, ‘Poolbeg’ or the ‘Company’) a clinical stage infectious disease pharmaceutical company with a capital light clinical model, has signed a binding term sheet, encompassing all commercial terms, with AnaBio Technologies (AnaBio), with a full licence and collaboration agreement to follow.
The partnership allows Poolbeg exclusive access to AnaBio’s microencapsulation and nanoencapsulation technologies, IP and expertise for oral vaccine applications. Poolbeg will utilise this technology in conjunction with its own expertise in infectious diseases, vaccine development and its associated technologies to develop an oral vaccine delivery platform. Poolbeg will also investigate using its proprietary Vaccine Discovery Platform in conjunction with this jointly developed oral vaccine delivery platform.
Oral vaccines for diseases such as polio have been used successfully for decades by delivering antigens to specific areas of the gut with the objective of stimulating ‘mucosal immunity’, which prevents pathogens infecting the body. Oral vaccines offer an efficient method of administration, reducing significant challenges for distribution and administration addressing the gaps in supplying the global community as well as addressing needle-phobia.
Microencapsulation is key to delivering drugs to the gut and results in prolonged absorption profiles. Microencapsulation also helps to ensure the right dose of a product is absorbed by the body. Preliminary data has shown that AnaBio’s platform may be combined with dual nanotechnology to create a two-step delivery process with enhanced uptake to specific cells. This technology platform can be used to encapsulate a wide range of drugs including molecules such as proteins, peptides, DNA and RNA. As a result of the pandemic, mRNA vaccines have been one of the standout success stories in the fight against COVID-19.
Jeremy Skillington, PhD, CEO of Poolbeg Pharma, said: “As we have seen in the COVID-19 pandemic, the success of global vaccination drives is dependent on the effective uptake of vaccines. Oral vaccines are highly attractive due to their improved stability profiles, ease of administration, generation of mucosal immunity and being preferable to needle-phobic patients.
“The pharma sector is increasingly recognising that oral vaccines can act as standalone regimens or as boosters to injected vaccines which can struggle to generate mucosal immunity. By working with the experts at AnaBio and accessing its advanced micro and nano encapsulation technology, this places Poolbeg in a prime position to develop products for the oral vaccine market with vaccines for enteric (gut) and respiratory pathogens.”
Aidan Fitzsimons, PhD, CEO of, AnaBio Technologies, said: “The global pandemic has led to a major acceleration in vaccine development based on a deeper understanding of how to create and maintain immunity to disease; including the importance of mucosal immunity in addition to blood immunity. We believe that our patented microencapsulation technology designed to deliver intact active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) to specific sites within the body, combined with Poolbeg’s innate knowledge of viruses, could enable us together to create effective oral vaccines and make a significant impact on the vaccine market.”
Poolbeg Pharma Plc
Jeremy Skillington, CEO
Ian O’Connell, CFO
+353 (0) 1 644 0007
About Poolbeg Pharma
Poolbeg Pharma is a clinical stage infectious disease pharmaceutical company, with a capital light clinical model which aims to develop multiple products faster and more cost effectively than the conventional biotech model. The Company, headquartered in London, is led by a team with a track record of creation and delivery of shareholder value and aspires to become a “one-stop shop” for Big Pharma seeking mid-stage products to licence or acquire.
The Company is targeting the growing infectious disease market. In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, infectious disease has become one of the fastest growing pharma markets and is expected to exceed $250bn by 2025.
With its initial assets from Open Orphan plc, an industry leading infectious disease and human challenge trials business, Poolbeg has access to knowledge, experience, and clinical data from over 20 years of human challenge trials. The Company is using these insights to acquire new assets as well as reposition clinical stage products, reducing spend and risk. It already has a Phase II ready repositioned small molecule immunomodulator for severe influenza and a portfolio of other exciting assets. The Company plans to broaden this portfolio further going forward and is in active discussions with AI data analysis platforms to help accelerate the power of its human challenge model data and biobank.
About AnaBio Technologies
AnaBio Technologies is a specialist microencapsulation company, focussed on improving health and performance through micro-encapsulation of sensitive bioactive ingredients for food, beverage and pharmaceutical applications. Founded in 2011 by Dr Sinead Bleiel, and based in Carrigtwohill Co Cork, AnaBio has developed into a global leader in the field of micro encapsulation with 15 patent families and clients across N America, Asia, and EU.
Bioactives and APIs clearly bestow health benefits, but are vulnerable to being inactivated by environmental stresses encountered during processing, storage and digestion. This can result in limited quantities of intact active bioactives reaching the site of action in the body, and no health benefit.
Microencapsulation represents a sophisticated delivery system designed to overcome this problem. A protective coat is created at microscopic level around the bioactive or API which protects the ingredient from a wide range of environmental conditions, enables its release at the appropriate site within the body, and thereby ensures that the potential health benefits of the bioactive are fully realised.
AnaBio Technologies offers its clients a range of services including contract research to develop bespoke microencapsulation solutions, commercial scale manufacture and supply of microencapsulated ingredients and licencing of its patented microencapsulated technology
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