After a long history of collaboration between three research groups at the UB-IDIBELL, CSIC and UAB in the nucleic acid interference (siRNA) research it has been found the solution when inhibited, among others, genes involved in inflammatory diseases, such as those related to the action of tumour necrosis factor (TNF-alpha). As a result of this project it has been applied in 2010 for a patent that was recently licensed to the Janus Developments S.L. company.
The obtained results suggested that, in the long term, these products may be useful in the treatment of inflammatory diseases such as Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, asthma, psoriasis and even some types of cancer diseases. As mentioned in these diseases, the TNF-alpha promotes the pathological state, it is clear that the regulation of this factor may allow a significant improvement in patients when they finally can be applied after the clinical trials.
The patented research results have been obtained from the joint research groups from different universities and research centers. It has participated the Nucleic Acids Chemistry Group by CSIC, led by Ramon Eritja PhD, from the Institute of Advanced Chemistry (IQAC); the Nutrition, Metabolism and Gene Therapy group from the UB-IDIBELL (Bellvitge Biomedical Research Institute), led by Dr. Jose Carlos Perales; and the Inflammation and Tolerance Research Group, from the UAB, led by Dr. Ester Fernandez.
Janus Developments S.L., a company that aims to bring basic research to industry so that inventions can really get to the users, has licensed the patent in order to continue maturing the development of this potential therapy to initiate preclinical studies. In the future, there are plans to incorporate other project partners to fund its full clinical development.
The Fundació Bosch i Gimpera, as a centre for knowledge transfer, technology and innovation, has led the negotiations between the research group of the UB and the Janus Developments company.