Ribozymes for In Vivo Degradation of G-Nerve Agents

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Office for Chemical and Biological Defense
Contract: FA8650-08-M-6914
Agency Tracking Number: C081-108-0086
Amount: $70,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: CBD08-108
Solicitation Number: 2008.1
Solicitation Year: 2008
Award Year: 2008
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2008-05-28
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2008-11-28
Small Business Information
P.O. Box 80010, Austin, TX, 78708
DUNS: 022552900
HUBZone Owned: Y
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: Y
Principal Investigator
 Janet Huie
 Staff Scientist
 (607) 272-0002
Business Contact
 Noe Salazar
Title: President
Phone: (512) 656-6200
Email: nsalazar@agavebio.com
Research Institution
Given the possibility to administer prophylactic doses of protein bioscavengers inactivating OP nerve agents before they reach their acetylcholinesterase target, much attention has been given to proteins such as human butyrylcholinesterase and paraoxonase I. As small nucleic acid catalysts can exhibit triphosphoesterase activities, the identification of new molecules active against nerve agents would constitute a significant breakthrough for the development of a biopharmaceutical approach against OP agents, with rapid optimization of catalytic rate, stability, large-scale production, storage and formulation. In this Phase I, Agave BioSystems proposes to develop novel catalytically active oligonucleotides against G-nerve agents using high throughput selection in E. coli. The development of a high-throughput selection method in E. coli to identify novel RNA molecules able to hydrolyze nerve agents constitutes a promising and innovative approach. Unlike other methods typically used for the de novo creation of new RNA or DNA catalysts, this in vivo approach will directly identify molecules combining favorable binding and dissociation constants, as well as strong catalytic activity.

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

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