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Navigo, Mannin agree to develop affinity ligand against a novel drug for treatment of COVID-19

Navigo Proteins, a premier protein engineering company and developer of affinity ligands for custom chromatography solutions and Mannin, a subsidiary of Mannin Research Inc. (MRI), have agreed to develop a Precision X affinity ligand against the fusion protein of Angiopoietin-1 and Complement 4 Binding Protein (ANG1-C4BP) for use in GMP manu­facturing. Mannin, and its parent MRI, are developing the Ang1-C4bp therapeutic as first-in-class treatment in addressing the unmet needs of patients in Acute Respiratory Disease, glaucoma, and kidney disease.

The Ang1-C4bp recombinant protein is a therapeutic that acts to specifically, and potently activate the Tie2 receptor, a part of the Ang1-Tie2 mechanism of action (MoA). Clinical studies have shown that drugs targeting this MoA improve patient outcomes with severe infections from infectious diseases, such as COVID-19. If left untreated, the most severe patients can develop Acute Respiratory Disease Syndrome (ARDS), leading to systemic organ failure and death. Through activation of the Ang1-Tie2 MoA, the Ang1-C4bp therapeutic would be addressing the vascular dysfunction caused by the infectious disease, ultimately improving patient outcomes such as days on ventilator, weight loss, days in hospital, and reduction in death.

The precision capturing technology notably enables affinity purification for proteins beyond antibodies de-risking downstream process development and assuring a robust and scalable process for clinical development as well as commercialization. The development of this affinity ligand thus aides in the acceleration of process development timelines to support Mannin in their mission to rapidly develop the therapeutic for ARDS patients, and further develop their therapeutic platform for additional indications, in the cardiovascular space and beyond.

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“After years of collaboration with Navigo for various projects, we at Omnium got to fundamentally understand how the Navigo Precision Capturing technology platform and their derisked business model create excellent opportunities for synergy with BioPharm innovators,” commented Renaud Jacquemart, CEO of Omnium Global Consulting, who provided strategic and technical advice to Navigo, MRI and Mannin. “It was an obvious choice for Mannin to solve a major purification challenge and accelerate process development with increased yields and decreased costs”.

Dr Florian Settele, Head of the Business Unit Precision Capturing, commented: “We commend Mannin for their efforts to develop much needed therapeutics against COVID-19 in this continuing pandemic and are more than glad to contribute by enabling innovative and platformized purification of their recombinant protein. Precision X makes downstream process development robust, predictable and fast and thus supports straight forward asset development plans. A Precision X affinity ligand is the process development hack to assure a scalable process from bench to commercial manufacturing.”

Dr. George N. Nikopoulos, CEO Mannin Research said: “The strategic importance of working with a leader in capture technology cannot be understated. The need to rapidly develop needed new therapeutics is a challenge that Navigo has taken head on with its technology platform. For MRI and its subsidiaries, utilizing technologies that can accelerate or enable our team to address our patients as soon as possible is a top priority.”