Novaliq begins clinical trials for SFA-delivered cyclosporin eye drops

Semifluorinated alkanes (SFAs) provide a platform for insoluble drugs.--Courtesy of Novaliq

Novaliq is beginning an early-stage study of its cyclosporin eye drop for dry eye syndrome. Although cylosporin is poorly soluble in water, Novaliq's platform allows for a clear solution as opposed to an emulsion, making it more suitable for delivering drugs in the eye.

The Phase I initiation comes shortly after the company received U.S. and European patent approval for the eye drop, called CyclASol, which in preclinical studies "demonstrated long-term stability plus superior wettability, pharmacokinetics and biocompatibility compared to contemporary emulsions," according to the company.

Novaliq's platform uses semifluorinated alkanes (SFAs) as an alternative delivery solution to water. The SFA solution allows for better dissolution and dispersion of the drug in the liquid, which can cut down on the blurred vision that emulsions can cause.

And last year, Novaliq pulled in an $18 million round of financing from entrepreneur Dietmar Hopp's Dievini Hopp Bio Tech Holding, which also contributed the rest of its total $35 million in financing. The latest round, the company said at the time, would primarily serve to bring CyclASol into clinical trials early this year.

"A core feature of our platform is that we can dissolve poorly soluble drugs, instead of having to prepare emulsions," Novaliq Chief Business Officer Dieter Scherer told FierceDrugDelivery at the time of the funding round. "Like in the case of CyclASol, as the name indicates, it is a clear solution in contrast to emulsions of other approaches."

- here's the release