Serb Pharmaceuticals licenses Soligenix antigen to develop Ricin antidote

SERB will leverage its unique broad spectrum polyclonal antibody platform, gained in its acquisition of BTG Specialty Pharmaceuticals. They have signed a worldwide exclusive license to use an antigen from Soligenix [NSDQ: SNGX] to develop a novel therapeutic treatment for ricin poisoning. There is an unmet need for protection against this highly potent toxin for which there is no vaccine or therapeutic intervention available.

This specialized manufacturing process generates binding fragments from antibodies that are specific to a given antigen, helping to ensure potency and purity. This platform is currently used to manufacture two of the company’s currently marketed products, CroFab and DigiFab. The antibodies will be generated using a modified form of the ricin toxin, developed by Soligenix. The modifications have removed the biological activity of the protein so that it is not toxic, while still retaining its shape to trigger an effective antibody response.

“With no current therapeutic options, the threat of ricin represents a significant unmet need in the field of biodefense and medical countermeasures,” said Anthony Higham, CEO of SERB Pharmaceuticals. “Our expertise in antibody development and the commercial scale manufacturing capabilities acquired with BTG together with SERB’s track record of reliably providing a portfolio of high quality CBRN antidotes, uniquely position us to successfully deliver a solution.”

SERB is an expert and leader in the field of medical countermeasures to protect the public and military forces. Their current portfolio includes 14 critical care medicines that counter Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear (CBRN) risks. SERB has been a long-standing partner of health authorities, militaries, and other governmental and non-governmental agencies in the US, Europe, Latin America, the Middle East, and North Africa. SERB will conduct studies to assess the efficacy and safety of the product with initial results expected by the end of 2022. The company is scheduled to discuss the development pathway with the FDA and EMA in the coming months, which will determine the overall development timeline.

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