SAN ANTONIO, TX–(Marketwired – Jul 13, 2015) – GenSpera, Inc. (OTCQB: GNSZ) today announced that its strategic partner Phyton Biotech, the pioneer in Plant Cell Fermentation (PCF®), has had its international patent application WO 2015/0892978 A1 “PRODUCTION OF THAPSIGARGINS BY THAPSIA CELL SUSPENSION CULTURE,” published by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).
“Thapsigargin is the active component in all of our prodrugs including our lead drug candidate, mipsagargin. We have traditionally isolated thapsigargin from a plant that grows in areas around the Mediterranean Sea and have always been confident in our ability to generate thapsigargin at commercial scale via cultivation of the plant itself,” said Russell Richerson, PhD, GenSpera’s Chief Operating Officer. “The invention described in the patent application provides, for the first time, a suspension cell culture suitable for mass production of thapsigargin and offers a potentially alternative route to commercial scale production of this important molecule.”
“We proudly announced our collaboration with Phyton Biotech earlier this year and are pleased with the continued optimization of thapsigargin production that they have achieved since the time this patent application was submitted,” said Craig Dionne, PhD, GenSpera’s CEO. “Phyton Biotech has consistently demonstrated its ability to provide PCF®-derived molecules suitable for regulatory submissions on a worldwide basis.”
“We are excited about our work with Genspera and the development of additional IP to further enhance the value of our technology and the GenSpera platform,” stated Mark Mitchell, Phyton Biotech’s President. “We believe the process underlying our patent application will further our quest to ensure a high quality and sustainable worldwide source of thapsigargin for GenSpera.”
Mipsagargin is a prodrug in human clinical trials for several different tumor types. Mipsagargin consists of a thapsigargin derivative, 12ADT, coupled to a peptide that helps solubilize the prodrug and prevents its internalization into cells until the peptide is removed. The mechanism of action works by targeting the enzyme PSMA, which is highly expressed on the surface of almost all cancer tumor vasculature, including those of glioblastoma. PSMA recognizes and removes the peptide, releasing the active ingredient 12ADT into the cell and bringing about cell death. The prodrug delivery system ensures that mipsagargin is activated only within the tumor, providing greater anti-tumor efficacy and minimizing side effects.
Phyton Biotech is the pioneer in Plant Cell Fermentation (PCF®) for the development and manufacture of plant-based active ingredients and other complex molecules. Phyton Biotech’s development services business is focused on harnessing plant-derived natural actives and products for use in the pharmaceutical field (API’s) as well as in food ingredients, cosmetic, and agricultural industries. Uti1izing a proprietary PCF® platform technology, Phyton offers a time, risk, and cost balanced path to commercially viable production processes, resulting in the addition of sustainability, reliability, quality and scalability to the supply chain of an API. Phyton is also the world’s largest commercial provider of high quality Paclitaxel and Docetaxel API via PCF® to a global customer base of sterile injectable manufacturers. The company has GMP facilities in Ahrensburg, Germany and Vancouver, Canada.
GenSpera, Inc. is a San Antonio-based biotech company that unlocks conventional thinking to conceive, design, and develop cancer therapies. GenSpera’s technology platform combines a powerful, plant-derived cytotoxin (thapsigargin) with a patented prodrug delivery system that provides for targeted release of drug candidates within tumors. GenSpera’s lead drug candidate, mipsagargin, was granted Orphan Drug designation by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2013 for evaluation in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (liver cancer).
For additional information on GenSpera, visit www.genspera.com and connect on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, YouTube and Google+.