TÜBINGEN, Germany, Nov. 8, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- CureVac AG today announced that it has been granted a patent (patent No. EP2101823, publication of grant on Nov 23, 2016) by the European Patent Office providing broad patent protection for the Company's RNAntibody® technology. RNAntibody® is designed to enable the prolonged expression of functional antibodies and antibody-like proteins from mRNA. It is intended for use as a transient, long lasting and safe passive immunization technology in prophylactic and therapeutic settings.
RNAntibody® technology can be applied in many disease indications including cancer, cardiovascular diseases, infectious diseases and autoimmune diseases. RNAntibody® is a component of CureVac's RNArt® portfolio of molecular therapeutics that give the body the information required to produce its own functional proteins.
Mariola Fotin-Mleczek, Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer of CureVac, stated, "This patent significantly strengthens CureVac's overall mRNA intellectual property estate and greatly enhances the value of RNAntibody®, our proprietary technology for the development of mRNA-based antibodies. Having developed this technology for several years, CureVac has built a library of data demonstrating the potential of RNAntibody® to enable the expression of antibodies by coding specific information into mRNA, which the body then receives and uses to produce its own, custom-tailored protein as medicine. We believe this patent family will serve as the standard bearer for any future therapeutic endeavors involving mRNA-based antibody technology given its broad composition of matter, production and methods of use protection, as well as its reach across multiple disease indications."
In conjunction with the patent, CureVac presented data on its RNAntibody® technology at the 4th International mRNA Health Conference in Boston, MA. In a talk by Dr. Nigel Horscroft, Vice President Development RNArt®, and a poster by Dr. Thomas Schlake, Head of Enabling Technologies, the company demonstrated the utility and flexibility of the technology in multiple disease indications:
- High and sustained serum levels of antibodies were produced rapidly following a single administration of mRNA in vivo.
- Substantial levels of mRNA expressed human antibodies persisted for more than 28 days after one dose of in vivo application.
- In a rabies virus infection model, an mRNA encoded antibody was able to protect 100 percent, not only when administered before the challenge, but also in a post-exposure scenario.
- Data was also presented showing protection in two toxin-mediated disease models using mRNA-encoded single domain VHH antibodies.
- In the field of oncology, two approved antibody therapeutics, Blinatumumab and Rituximab, were adapted to mRNA format and protected animals in relevant tumor challenge models.
Dr. Fotin-Mleczek concluded, "mRNA-based therapies are set to revolutionize modern medicine. CureVac's mission with RNAntibody® is to accelerate antibody development times dramatically, to lower treatment costs and combine different antibody targets in a single formulation. Our technology also offers the potential to unlock a wealth of previously undruggable targets by efficiently producing proteins within cells and within specific subcellular compartments."
About CureVac AG
Founded in 2000 as a spin-off from the University of Tϋbingen in Germany, CureVac is a technology leader in the development of drugs that are based on the molecule Messenger RNA (mRNA). The company generated over more than 16 years a very advanced product pipeline and IP portfolio.
The basic principle of CureVac's proprietary technology is the use of mRNA as a data carrier to instruct the human body to produce its own proteins capable of fighting a wide range of diseases. CureVac's mRNA programs include novel mRNA-based cancer immunotherapies and prophylactic vaccines against infectious diseases (RNActive®), molecular therapies designed to trigger the body's own production of therapeutic proteins (RNArt®), a technology that enables the prolonged expression of functional antibodies and antibody-like proteins from mRNA (RNAntibody®) and a novel, RNA-based adjuvant therapy designed to enhance the immunogenicity of vaccines and proteins (RNAdjuvant®).
Since its inception, CureVac has received approximately $360 million (€325 million) in equity investments. CureVac has entered into various collaborations with multinational corporations and organizations, including agreements with Boehringer Ingelheim, Sanofi Pasteur, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and IAVI.
For more information, please visit www.curevac.com.
Verena Lauterbach, Senior Manager Communications
CureVac AG, Tübingen, Germany
T: +49 (0) 7071 9883 1756
Andrew Mielach, Vice President
Tiberend Strategic Advisors, New York
T: +1 212 375 2694
SOURCE CureVac AG