20Med Therapeutics, a company working on non-viral delivery and development of gene therapies and vaccines, and Touchlight, a biotechnology company pioneering enzymatic DNA production to enable the genetic medicine revolution, have announced that both parties will collaborate on establishing a novel vaccination platform that combines Touchlight’s rapid enzymatic doggybone DNA platform with 20Med Therapeutics’ bioresponsive polymer nanoparticle technology.\n\n\n\n“Today’s news further underscores the flexibility of our platform in delivering both a range of RNA or DNA-based therapeutic payloads that are sourced either through partnerships or are based on our proprietary activities. We are looking forward to collaborating with Touchlight on this promising project, which will strengthen both companies’ platforms and increase the body of evidence around our nanoparticle technology,“ said Michiel Lodder, CEO of 20Med Therapeutics.\n\n\n\n“Our collaboration with 20Med Therapeutics has already delivered promising preclinical data showing the potential of nanoparticle-formulated doggybone DNA to produce strong neutralizing antibodies and durable T cell responses following vaccine administration in nanoparticles. Both companies’ platforms offer distinct conceptual advantages in terms of speed, scalability, thermostability and avoiding the potentially harmful and cumbersome bacterial or viral process steps of traditional methods in the space," said Helen Horton, chief research officer of Touchlight. \n\n\n\n“Touchlight, as part of its funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, will be able to further evaluate and determine the potential applicability of this technology combination. Successful demonstration of the doggybone DNA platform’s effectiveness in DNA vaccine and gene therapy applications has the potential to support the global availability of innovative medicines and to further the application of the doggybone DNA platform in enabling rapid pandemic response.”\n\n\n\n20Med Therapeutics vaccine delivery\n\n\n\nNamed after its schematic structure, dbDNA is a minimal, linear, double-stranded and covalently closed DNA construct. dbDNA can encode long, complex, or unstable DNA sequences, eliminates bacterial sequences and has a strong expression profile.\n\n\n\n20Med Therapeutics’ nanoparticles have been specifically designed for efficient intracellular delivery of oligonucleotide-based vaccines and therapeutics. The technology platform is based on 20Med's proprietary bioresponsive polymeric nanoparticles which provide protection of fragile payloads during administration and circulation but allow for rapid bioresponsive release of that payload as soon as the particles enter the cytosol.\n\n\n\nLast year, Touchlight entered into a collaboration with Lonza. It also started working with Odimma Therapeutics, as well as receiving a Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation grant for its technology.