Polymeric Nanoparticles to Scavenge Lipophilic Molecules

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA9550-11-C-0053
Agency Tracking Number: F10B-T24-0120
Amount: $99,991.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Awards Year: 2011
Solicitation Year: 2010
Solicitation Topic Code: AF10-BT24
Solicitation Number: 2010.B
Small Business Information
1 Riverside Circle, Suite 400, Roanoke, VA, -
DUNS: 627132913
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Zhiguo Zhou
 Principal Investigator
 (434) 483-4234
Business Contact
 Maggie Hudson
Title: Sr. Contracts Administrator
Phone: (434) 483-4254
Email: submissions307@lunainnovations.com
Research Institution
 Virginia Tech
 John C Rudd
 Office of Sponsored Programs
1880 Pratt Drive, Suite 2006
Blacksburg, VA, 24060-
 (540) 231-5281
 Nonprofit college or university
ABSTRACT: Mycotoxins represent a class of potential chemical/biological warfare agents that pose significant acute and chronic dangers to military forces. There are no current therapeutic treatments for exposure to such toxic agents and there is an urgent need to develop a therapeutic drug which is capable of efficiently sequestering the toxic molecules and facilitating their excretion in vivo. Luna Innovations proposes to develop a polymer-based nanoparticles to treat patients and person under suspision of mycotoxin intoxication. The proposed therapeutic agent is designed to be universally effective for in vivo scavenging lipophilic molecules including mycotoxins, other lipophilic toxic compounds as well as non-toxic lipophilic molecules. The scavenging drug acts based on its high affinity toward lipophilic molecules, and thus it is able to extract and sequester them from surrounding bioenvironment. The joint team between Luna Innovations and the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine will conduct a series of experiments to demonstrate the feasibility of the proposed technology during Phase I. The nanoparticle therapeutic agent will be fabricated and tested in human cell culture for their efficacy to scavenge lipophilic molecules. The therapeutic candidate will be optimized and further evaluated for its effetiveness in relevant animal models during Phase II. BENEFIT: The proposed nanoparticle therapeutic agent would find use in mitigating and/or counteracting the toxic effects of mycotoxins and other lipophilic toxins that have been suggested to use as potential warfare agents either in a war zone or terrorism attack on civilians. Mycotoxin can contaminate food and feeds due to their natural production by molds, and the proposed drug is also useful to treat patients/animals who suffer from such contaminated food/feeds. In addition, there is a significant drive by pharmaceutical companies for drugs effectively lowering the plasma level of bad cholesterol and unwanted lipids especially for atherosclerotic patients. Drugs developed through this program will be marketable as a cholesterol-lowering or lipid-removing drug. What"s more the technology can be used to treat local anesthetic toxicity caused by excessive/unintentional anesthetic injection.

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

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