Prokaryotics, Inc., a privately-held biopharmaceutical company engaged in the discovery and development of novel anti-infective drugs, announced today that it has entered into an exclusive licensing agreement with Fundación MEDINA, the not-for-profit Spanish foundation Centro de Excelencia en Investigación de Medicamentos Innovadores en Andalucia.
As part of this agreement, Prokaryotics gains worldwide rights to develop, manufacture and commercialize a novel natural product-based antibiotic class with a new mechanism of action targeting a previously unexploited aspect of bacterial cell wall biosynthesis. MEDINA is eligible for royalty payments from any resulting products. Specific terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
"We are extremely excited to complete this license agreement with MEDINA," said Terry Roemer, Founder and CSO of Prokaryotics. "MEDINA is an internationally recognized leader in antimicrobial drug discovery and preclinical development and has contributed significantly to some of the most important antibiotics currently available. Through this partnership, Prokaryotics and MEDINA are leveraging complementary expertise and technologies to develop new classes of urgently needed antibiotics to treat life-threatening multidrug resistant bacteria."
Olga Genilloud, Scientific Director of FUNDACIÓN MEDINA, said, "We are delighted to have entered this agreement with Prokaryotics and to have the opportunity to collaborate on the development of this new class of antibiotics discovered from our natural product libraries. Prokaryotics has the expertise to advance these new antibiotics to the clinic and this partnership reinforces the relevance of microbial natural products as continued sources of new antibiotics to fight multidrug resistant bacteria."
Prokaryotics is being incubated at the Institute for Life Science Entrepreneurship (ILSE), in Union, New Jersey. Keith Bostian, CEO of ILSE, said, "As a start-up company, Prokaryotics has an impressive array of assets to contribute to the global efforts in combating antibiotic resistant bacteria, and we are delighted to see the progress they have made since their recent inception."
About Multi-Drug Resistant Infections
The relentless advance of antibiotic drug resistant bacteria has raised concerns whether within the next 2-3 decades we could be facing a 'pre-antibiotic era' where existing antibiotics will become largely ineffective in treating serious and life-threatening infections. Indeed, the World Health Organization has projected that the impact on human health and economic costs associated with antibiotic drug resistance will rival that of global warming. Whereas continued improvements to existing antibiotics certainly stretch such timelines, entirely new classes of antibiotics with novel mechanisms of action are urgently needed to combat multi-drug resistant bacteria.
About Prokaryotics, Inc.
Prokaryotics Inc, located in the ILSE incubator at Union, NJ, is a biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of entirely novel antibiotics that target serious multi-drug resistant bacterial infections (www.Prokaryotics.com). Prokaryotics Inc. leverages a deep knowledge of complex bacterial physiology, innovative screening strategies, and scientific excellence necessary to discover and develop new classes of antibiotics targeting outer membrane biogenesis - the fundamental armor erected by bacteria to naturally withstand the effects of antibiotics.
MEDINA is a non-profit research organization established as a Spanish public–private partnership between Merck Sharp and Dohme de España S.A., the Government of Andalucía and the University of Granada, to discover new drug leads for unmet medical needs (www.medinadiscovery.com). MEDINA is an internationally recognized center for microbial natural products drug discovery and preclinical development programs and has unbroken historical ties to some of the most important natural products antibiotic discoveries of recent decades. MEDINA is active in the field being member of the ENABLE consortium, a program of the European Innovative Medicines Initiative – New Drugs for Bad Bugs (IMI-ND4BB) for the development of new Gram negative antibiotics (http://nd4bb-enable.eu), and associate member of the BEAM Alliance of European Biotech Companies involved in the discovery of new antibiotics (http://beam-alliance.eu/).