Ferring bets on bacteriophages to treat inflammatory bowel disease

15/07/2015 - 2 minutes

Bacteriophages have been instinctively killing bacteria for millions of years. These natural bacteria predators represent a potential alternative to antibiotics and Ferring Pharmaceuticals wants to use them against inflammatory bowel disease. The Swiss pharma joined forces with phages specialist Intralytix to manufacture these viruses for clinical purposes.

Bacteriophages can be very selective when it comes to attacking bacteria, which makes it a unique tool for treating inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). The tiny predators can precisely pin point and go after pathogen bacteria, whilst the beneficial microbiome remains safe and sound.

Ferring is not the only one focusing on this powerful approach. French startup Eligo also aims at curing the inflammatory disease by employing bacteriophages. However, whilst Eligo uses the trendy technology CRISPR combined with the capsids of phages instead of the whole entity, Ferring is betting on the core bacteriophage technology of the American company Intralytix. The latter currently holds the world’s largest phage-based products portfolio on commercial markets.

Ferring has a special interest in gastroenterology.

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