A licensing agreement for use of the FunSel screening platform has been announced by Purespring Therapeutics and SwanBio.
Under the terms of the agreement, SwanBio will license the FunSel screening platform from Purespring to explore new targets for early-stage pipeline programs. SwanBio will have the option to develop any targets identified and to own and commercialize any molecules developed. Purespring will be entitled to milestones and royalties upon successful commercialization.
Purespring Therapeutics is a gene therapy company focused on transforming the treatment of kidney disease, while SwanBio Therapeutics is a gene therapy company.
FunSel enables a new way of discovering effective biological drugs, simplifying traditional drug discovery. The companies said this allows functional selection of the most effective factor for disease phenotype correction, starting from a library of thousands of AAV vectors that are selected directly in vivo.
All factors in the FunSel library are secreted outside the cells, maximizing therapeutic benefit. The platform is a gene and mechanism of action agnostic and is based on the physiology of the organ and disease in question.
Richard Francis, CEO at Purespring, said: “FunSel brings unique and pioneering screening capabilities and can help deliver the promise of gene therapy to non-monogenic disorders, allowing far broader patient populations to be treated than is the case with most gene therapies.
“This is the second example of how this gene search engine is helping to underpin a company’s development strategy and demonstrates our ability to maximize the value of this platform by sharing this unique capability. SwanBio has a clear mission to develop AAV therapies for neurological disorders and it’s great to be able to support them and potentially others exploring new targets.”
The FunSel platform has already been used in the creation of Purespring’s sister company Forcefield Therapeutics’ product to protect heart function, where FunSel was used to discover naturally occurring proteins that retain heart function and help existing cardiomyocytes protect themselves after myocardial infarction.
Tom Anderson, CEO at SwanBio, added: “FunSel has the potential to enable acceleration and greater precision of candidate selection, and SwanBio’s application of FunSel has the potential to expand and confirm our early pipeline candidates.
“We are committed to advancing AAV-based therapies for the most debilitating neurological disorders and this technology promises to significantly support our ability to refine and further develop potential candidates for development.”