Novartis teams with MedinCell for controlled-release injection tech

BEPO demonstration--Courtesy of MedinCell

French drug delivery specialist MedinCell is teaming up with Novartis' ($NVS) generic division Sandoz to develop controlled-release drugs with a focus on cancer.

The two companies aim to formulate APIs using MedinCell's BEPO platform, which is a polymer semi-solid designed to release drugs at a controlled rate. MedinCell lists peptides, proteins, antibodies and small molecules as those most compatible with the technology.

Novartis looks to bolster its line of subcutaneous drugs with MedinCell's delivery clout by reducing the frequency of administration, improving patient tolerability and ultimately reducing costs.

MedinCell says of its platform: "It is composed of mono-dispersed copolymers containing hydrophilic blocks (PEG) linked with hydrophobic blocks (PLA), which form a semi-solid depot when exposed to an aqueous environment. The hydrophilic blocks can interact with hydrophilic APIs and permit for their controlled release, whereas the hydrophobic blocks are able to solubilize and retain hydrophobic APIs. Our BEPO plate-form is compatible with a great number of sensitive peptides and proteins, and provides controlled release with low or high burst effects, depending on the medical needs."

- here's the release (PDF)

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