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N8 Medical LLC, an emerging biomedical technology company, announces that it has entered into a license agreement with Brigham Young University for a patented class of compounds known as ceragenins, giving it exclusive worldwide rights to the technology for pharmaceutical and medical device applications.
The license forms the basis of N8 Medical's program for the development of ceragenin technology to produce antimicrobial coatings for a wide variety of medical devices including urinary catheters, endotracheal tubes, hemodialysis catheters and orthopedic implants to help prevent healthcare-acquired infections (HAIs).
"Hospital-acquired infections are a leading cause of morbidity and mortality. There is a large unmet need for antimicrobial treated medical devices to help prevent such infections" says David J. Richards, CEO of N8 Medical. "Ceragenin-based coating technology has shown the potential to significantly reduce bacterial contamination of medical devices for clinically relevant timeframes. We believe this will greatly improve patient outcomes and reduce hospital costs. We are excited to have entered into this license agreement with Brigham Young University."
Ceragenins are synthetic small molecule non-peptide compounds that mimic the broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity and other key functions of naturally occurring antimicrobial peptides, which form part of the human body's innate immune system. Bacteria attach to implantable and indwelling devices and form slime-like colonies called biofilms, which are nearly impossible to eradicate with conventional antibiotics. In preclinical testing, ceragenins have been highly effective at preventing bacterial colonization and eradicating pre-existing biofilms. The technology has merited funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for research on the development of ceragenin-based coatings for orthopedic implants.
"We have identified over 30 separate licensing and product development opportunities for the ceragenin technology and we are in active licensing discussions with leading medical device companies for field of use license rights," Richards adds. "We also plan to develop several of our own antimicrobial devices with ceragenin-based coatings, as well as ceragenin-based compounds for pharmaceutical applications. This will include the development of an oral drug to treat various gastrointestinal disorders. This is a promising area given the current research efforts funded by a $2.7 million NIH grant for the development of ceragenins to treat Clostridium difficile and Shigella."