SIOGEN Biotech, a company developing silicon-based nanoparticle drug delivery and targeting, and Veeda Clinical Research (Ahmedabad, India), a global clinical research organization, have announced a strategic partnership agreement to develop a new nanoparticle formulation of Doxorubicin to treat cancer.
The Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation of Malaysia, Datuk Seri. Dr. Maximus Johniti Ongkili was present to witness the signing of the deal, highly significant in the progression of the Malaysian biotechnology sector.
Under the terms of the agreement, SIOGEN will use its patented Siosomes® drug delivery and targeting technology to encapsulate Doxorubicin, a drug used for cancer treatment, and Veeda will undertake Phase I/II clinical trials of this formulation.
Doxorubicin is an established drug, which is used in chemotherapy for the treatment of leukemias, lymphomas and other cancers. In the past, pegylated liposome formulations of doxorubicin presented with adverse side effects that limited their dosage and efficacy. Encapsulation of Doxorubicin in Siosomes® is designed to increase efficacy of the drug through targeted delivery to the site of disease and decrease adverse effects by lowering the exposure of the drug to the tissues and cells.
Commenting on the partnership, Dr Shermal Perera, Managing Director of SIOGEN said: “We are delighted to enter into a strategic partnership with Veeda Clinical Research for the encapsulation of Doxorubicin. This partnership will allow us to explore the advantages of our proprietary Siosomes® technology for the targeted delivery of chemotherapeutic compounds. Our agreement with Veeda will capitalise on their significant clinical expertise to advance this product beyond the phase I/II clinical trials.”
Dr Maurice Cross, Group Medical Director of Veeda Clinical Research reflected that this agreement demonstrated the changes which are occurring in the nature of Clinical Research Organisations such as Veeda. He said: “In the past were merely providers of trials services, now we have to bring additional value to our client relationships. One way we can do this is by embracing innovative technologies such as that offered by SIOGEN and offering them to our own client base as solutions to their problems. Thus we become brokers of scientific technology and bring something quite new to the table.”
Datuk Seri Dr. Maximus also commented: “Following extensive Government investment in our growing biotech sector, this agreement is a showcase of the enormous talent found in Malaysian companies and underlines the growing importance of the Malaysian Biotechnology industry in the global arena.”