Actinobac Biomed Inc., a New Brunswick, N.J.-based pharma companies, received a $905k Small Business Technology Transfer Grant (STTR) Phase II Award from the National Institutes of Health/ National Cancer Institute.
The company will use the proceeds to continue to develop its drug candidate, Leukothera®, as a potential treatment for B-cell lymphomas.
Led by CEO and Senior Chemist Benjamin Belinka, PhD, Actinobac develops Leukothera®, a natural biologic agent that specifically targets and depletes disease related white blood. The company has exclusively licensed the rights to develop it as a therapeutic agent for the treatment of hematologic malignancies (leukemias and lymphomas), autoimmune and inflammatory diseases (such as rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, Crohn’s disease, type 1 diabetes, lupus, dry eye, asthma and psoriasis) and HIV infection.
The award will allow Actinobac Biomed to carry out pre-clinical studies leading to the filing of an Investigational New Drug (IND) application with the FDA to eventually begin testing Leukothera® in humans.
The STTR program will allow the company to formally collaborate with research institutions. This project is being conducted in collaboration with Scott Kachlany, PhD, founder of Actinobac and associate professor at Rutgers School of Dental Medicine, and Joseph R. Bertino, M.D., chief scientific officer at Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey.
The one-year grant is renewable for a second year at the same level of funding. Foundation Venture Capital Group, an affiliate of New Jersey Health Foundation, originally funded Actinobac with an investment.