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SA FasL engineered human islets as a novel product for the treatment of type diabetes

Award Information
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services
Branch: National Institutes of Health
Contract: 1R41DK111314-01A1
Agency Tracking Number: R41DK111314
Amount: $224,529.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: NIDDK
Solicitation Number: PA16-303
Solicitation Year: 2016
Award Year: 2017
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2017-07-01
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2019-06-30
Small Business Information
300 E MARKET ST STE 324, Louisville, KY, 40202-1959
DUNS: 079603469
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 (502) 244-9562
Business Contact
Phone: (502) 244-9562
Research Institution
 300 E Market Street
LOUISVILLE, KY, 40202-1959
 Nonprofit college or university
PROJECT SUMMARY Type diabetes T D is a chronic autoimmune disorder that affects of population worldwide Exogenous insulin treatment is the standard of care for T D but often negatively affects the quality of life and is ineffective in preventing recurrent hyperglycemia episodes and chronic complications Recent studies show that human islet allografts can restore long term normoglycemia and insulin independence protect from severe hypoglycemia and slow progression of microvascular lesions in immunosuppressed T D patients However immune rejection and continuous use of immunosuppression to control rejection are two major limitations of clinical islet transplantation Standard immunosuppression is ineffective in achieving long term graft survival and also has significant adverse effects on the graft and graft recipients Therefore the development of novel approaches to prevent rejection of islet grafts without chronic immunosuppression is a significant goal FasCure Therapeutics is focused on the development of biologics with desired immune modulatory activities for targeted indications The Company has exclusive rights to a portfolio of proprietary novel immune inhibitory ligands as components of an immunomodulatory platform for prevention and treatment of autoimmune diseases and graft rejection The Company s lead therapeutic platform includes islets engineered with a novel form of Fas ligand immunomodulatory protein SA FasL T cells are the main culprits of T D as well as allogeneic islet graft rejection T cells upregulate Fas receptor on their surface following antigen activation and become sensitive to Fas FasL mediated apoptosis Importantly FasL induced apoptosis plays an important role in T cell homeostasis and tolerance to self antigens As such SA FasL has significant potential for the induction of tolerance to auto and alloantigens Consistent with this notion the transient display of SA FasL protein on pancreatic islets have shown robust efficacy in overcoming immune rejection in various allogeneic and xenogeneic rodent transplantation models The major goals of this phase I STTR application is to i assesses the feasibility of engineering human islets with SA FasL protein without negatively impacting their function and ii test the efficacy of SA FasL engineered islets in overcoming rejection in a humanized mouse model in the absence of continuous immunosuppression If feasibility and efficacy are shown in the humanized mouse model the SA FasL engineered human islets will be further developed as a novel product in a Phase II STRR application for translation into clinic PROJECT NARRATIVE Type diabetes T D is a chronic autoimmune disorder that affects more than of the population worldwide Insulin as a standard treatment has major long term complications therefore the development of novel approaches to prevent and treat T D is a significant therapeutic goal The primary objective of this proposal is to engineer human pancreatic islets with an immunomodulatory biologic and test the efficacy of engineered islets in preventing rejection and treating diabetes in a humanized mouse model If effective this approach will have immediate and important implications for the use of allogeneic islets for the treatment of T D in humans

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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