Australian biopharmaceutical company Immuron has acquired intellectual property related to oral immunotherapies from Hadasit, the technology-transfer arm of Hadassah University Medical Center in Israel, the organizations said this week.
The deal establishes Hadasit as the largest shareholder in Immuron with a 19.99 percent stake, Hadasit and Immuron said.
The IP relates to the concept of treating automimmune and chronic disease with orally delivered polyclonal antibodies, developed by Yaron Ilan and colleagues at Hadassah.
Immuron, based in Melbourne, Australia, and publicly traded on the Australian Securities Exchange, has a commercial technology platform for manufacturing bulk polyclonal antibodies that are suitable for oral delivery. As a result of the deal, Ilan will serve as Immuron's medical director.
Immuron said that the initial applications of the technology will be in the areas of type 2 diabetes, liver cancer, and hepatitis C. Clinical trials for candidate antibodies are expected to start within three months, the company said.
"The joint effort … is capable of turning the concept of oral immunotherapy into a series of proof-of-concept trials," Colin Chapman, executive chairman of Immuron, said in a statement. "From there it should only be a short journey to commercialization if the trials are successful."
Immuron first announced that it intended to acquire Hadasit's IP in April. As part of its due diligence, Immuron commissioned Biocomm Squared to assess the scientific and economic foundation of Hadasit’s IP, the company said.
"We are very pleased that our collaboration with Immuron has reached this stage," Einat Zisman, CEO of Hadasit, said in a statement. "The combined efforts of Hadassah's IP and Immuron's capabilities can yield a new approach to address serious disease and metabolic syndromes."