The Agreement follows the successful conclusion of a two-year formulation development programme utilising TAOS® which has resulted in very exciting preclinical “proof of concept” data. In addition, independent KOL feedback generated by Heraeus Medical was highly enthusiastic about the clinical utility of the Locate TAOS® scaffold technology. The next phase of this partnered program will address formal product design and development milestones.
TAOS® is a new concept in medical materials and drug delivery that eliminates complicated and invasive surgical procedures. TAOS® is a delivery matrix for the precise administration and control of locally-acting therapeutics. Once TAOS® has been administered by a simple injection, the material additionally stimulates the body’s own repair process before degrading to leave behind newly-formed tissue. The process is intended to reduce rehabilitation time and postoperative complications, ultimately improving the patient’s experience. TAOS® and other Locate technologies are being used to enhance the use of stem cells and regenerative drugs in hard-to-heal and high cost areas of orthopaedics and beyond.
News of the deepening of the collaboration with Heraeus Medical comes as Locate completed a three-year TAOS® R&D program at the close of 2016. This project, which has been successful in creating lower dose osteoinductive drug-releasing scaffolds for hard-to-heal bone surgeries, was co-funded by the UK’s innovation agency, Innovate UK with a £1.1M grant.
The support of Innovate UK has proven invaluable to the company, and not only in moving Locate’s own products closer to the clinic. Spill-over benefits have included exciting new patent filings, newly-identified clinical opportunities, and an intimate understanding of the TAOS® platform, of which the aforementioned partnered program has been an early beneficiary.
Dr Robin Quirk, Chief Executive of Locate, commented:
“We are delighted that our partnered program with Heraeus Medical has moved on to the next phase of development. It has been extremely encouraging that the concept and technical targets were not only met, but in fact exceeded expectations. This in turn has uncovered additional future uses for the TAOS scaffold including applications in the cell delivery arena.
The accomplishments of the program outline the vital importance of Innovate UK to companies such as ours. The advances not only enabled Locate to directly achieve the objectives of a strategically important product program, but helped stretch the boundaries of our technology to meet the needs of others in allied therapeutic areas”.
To find out more, please visit the Locate Therapeutics website.