WAYLAND, Mass., Aug. 3 , 2011) /PRNewswire/ -- Avaxia Biologics, Inc., a privately-held biotech company developing oral antibody drugs that act locally within the gastrointestinal tract, announced today it was awarded a contract with the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), for the research and development of an oral antibody therapy to mitigate the gastrointestinal damage that follows radiation exposure that might occur after a nuclear incident. The contract totals $2.9 million over 2 years provided that key milestones are achieved. Should Avaxia's program meet its anticipated endpoints at the end of this contract, the company hopes to pursue future opportunities with BARDA.
Dr. Barbara Fox, Avaxia's CEO, commented, "We are very pleased to receive this contract and are proud to be working on this program related to our country's national defense. With this funding, we will be advancing our oral antibody product through the key efficacy studies needed to support the product's use as a nuclear threat countermeasure. This contract will permit us to complete the pre-clinical pharmacology studies for this potential therapy. We look forward to working with BARDA to develop a novel drug that can effectively protect the gastrointestinal tract from radiation damage.
This award provides Avaxia with a new drug development program that is of significant benefit to the company. Besides providing the company with additional scientific infrastructure, the research to be conducted on this therapeutic will contribute to and support our innovative technology platform and bolster work being done in the related field of inflammatory bowel disease. Also, should the project meet its targets, the manufacturing and sales of a radiation mitigation drug will increase the commercial opportunities for the company."
About BARDA: The Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), is part of the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. BARDA provides a comprehensive integrated portfolio approach to the advanced research and development, stockpile acquisition, innovation, and manufacturing infrastructure building of the necessary vaccines, drugs, therapeutics, diagnostic tools, and non-pharmaceutical products for public health medical emergencies including chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear threats, and pandemic influenza, and emerging infectious diseases. For additional information, visit www.hhs.gov/aspr.
About Avaxia Biologics, Inc.: Avaxia Biologics (www.avaxiabiologics.com) is an early stage company developing oral antibody therapeutics that act locally within the gastrointestinal tract. The antibodies are designed to treat both diseases of the GI tract and metabolic diseases. Using its proprietary antibody platform, Avaxia is developing products for inflammatory bowel disease, oral mucositis, celiac disease, diabetes and obesity.
SOURCE Avaxia Biologics, Inc.