Why it Matters

The past few years have witnessed the beginnings of a revolution in healthcare.  Cognizant of the ever increasing cost of healthcare, able governments worldwide have enacted legislation aimed at helping their citizens find medical coverage at reasonable costs.  Unfortunately, without measures to control the continuously escalating expense of diagnosis and treatment, they also may soon find themselves fighting a spiraling deficit with no apparent ceiling and the concomitant need to ration service.  The only reasonable solution is to lower the overall cost of healthcare, currently estimated at more than $2.2 trillion in the US, by improving efficiency and removing waste.

In contrast to this struggle are the very exciting discoveries and advancements being made daily through genomics research.  Envisioned when the human genome project began, disease treatment options are rapidly expanding as small molecule drugs are being sidelined in favor of target specific protein based pharmaceuticals.  The burgeoning field of proteomics carries with it the hope and promise to cure many diseases, but also the increased cost inherent in any new technology.  Here, at this intersection, is a grand challenge:  continue to advance the state-of-the-art in medicine but ensure all Americans have access.  Engineered BioPharmaceuticals (eBio) was formed to take on this challenge.

eBio’s focus:

  • Pharmaceutical manufacturing
    • Convert liquid based pharmaceuticals to “engineered” dry powders for pharmaceutical and biotech partners
    • Key dry powder process:  Atmospheric Spray Freeze Drying
    • Fill and finish the dry powders into appropriate delivery devices 
    • Perform all pharmaceutical manufacturing in an aseptic environment
  • Proprietary pharmaceutical development
    • Nano-carrier for drug delivery
    • Inhalable antibiotic
    • Improved asthma treatment
  • Diagnostic
    • DNA protection for tissue sampling
    • Non-invasive disease detection

Medical Benefits

The ASFD process produces particles with properties that are superior to conventional drying methods.  Highly uniform particles with improved aerodynamics allow consistent, targeted delivery via pulmonary and nasal routes.

Commercial Benefits

Atmospheric spray-freeze-drying is much more economical than lyophilization or spray-drying processes.  With ASFD, there are no high vacuum or heating requirements and the particle production methods are easily scalable. Unlike lyophilization, ASFD is a fairly quick procedure, taking only hours to produce particles as opposed to days. This process is also very easy to monitor and provides better control of particle size and morphology.

Social Benefits

The ability of ASFD particles to reach only their targeted location will help minimize side effects of drugs. This will allow drugs that have been shelved because of undesirable side effects to be brought back into production, eliminating the need and cost of creating entirely new drugs to treat the same aliment. Another benefit of the ASFD process is the ability to deliver protein based drugs in new, novel self-administration modalities, such as inhalation and self-reconstituted micro injectors. Eliminating the inconvenience and expense of requiring healthcare worker administration of drugs will have a positive effect on patient therapeutic compliance. The global benefit of ASFD is that it extends the shelve-lives of drugs, enhances their mass distribution and allows drugs to be self-administered. This will lead to successful mass-immunization campaigns and help minimize large-scale effects of pandemics or bio-terror threats.