McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine affiliated faculty member Krzysztof Matyjaszewski, PhD, is the Co-Founder and CSO of BioHybrid Solutions, LLC (BHS), a Pittsburgh-based protein engineering company, which recently received a contract worth up to $30 million from the United States Department of Defense to develop a next-generation prophylactic medical countermeasure. The project was sponsored by the U.S. Government through the Medical CBRN Defense Consortium (MCDC). Dr. Matyjaszewski is the J.C. Warner Professor of Natural Sciences at Carnegie Mellon University.
The U.S. Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) selected BHS through a request for prototype proposal under the MCDC to apply its proprietary NanoArmored TM protein engineering technology to improve pharmacokinetics of the prophylactic while reducing the potential for immunogenic side effects. Over the five-year program, BHS will develop NanoArmored TM drug candidates, conduct studies to demonstrate functionality, scale manufacturing, and complete regulatory activities towards approval of the countermeasure by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. BHS is leading the program in collaboration with FLIR Systems, Battelle, Ology Bioservices, the Allegheny Health Network, BTG PLC (now part of Boston Scientific) and the US Army.
In order to expedite development, BHS will utilize its specialized high-throughput discovery technology to rapidly select the NanoArmor needed and then manufacture that drug candidate.
“Our technology allows us to rationally tune protein performance through precision modification of proteins with a wide variety of synthetic polymers,” noted Dr. Matyjaszewski. “To date, we have created thousands of different NanoArmored proteins for a variety of industrial and therapeutic indications. We are well positioned to apply our technology to this important national security and public health application.”
“We have developed a unique way to protect against the toxic effects of chemical warfare agents and are honored to have been selected by DTRA to lead this very important program.” said Alan Russell, PhD, Co-Founder and CEO of BioHybrid Solutions and founding and former director of the McGowan Institute.