ProLynx announces SBIR grant award to develop long-acting parathyroid hormone for hypo-parathyroidism

SAN FRANCISCO, July 07, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Today ProLynx announced it was awarded a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant from the NIH. The grant was conferred for the development of a long acting parathyroid hormone – PTH(1-34) – that can be administered once-weekly for treatment of hypo-parathyroidism. To achieve this, ProLynx will employ its platform half-life extension technology using its hydrogel microsphere carriers.

The approved PTH replacement therapy is PTH(1-84), or Natpara, which is administered once daily as a subcutaneous injection. It has a short half-life and reaches a very high blood level at the beginning – which can cause high calcium – and a very low level at the end – which can cause low calcium. What is needed is a PTH that maintains a constant blood level within its therapeutic window, such as obtained with a continuous infusion. 

In the ProLynx platform, a drug is tethered to hydrogel microspheres using a self-cleaving linker that is pre-programmed to release the drug at a pre-determined, tunable rate. With a subcutaneous injection, the drug is slowly released from the microspheres into the systemic circulation.  ProLynx will use this technology to deliver a constant level of PTH(1-34) within its therapeutic window with once-weekly dosing.  This will closely mimic the continuous infusion of PTH(1-34), offering a safer and more effective alternative to the once-daily Natpara treatment for hypo-parathyroidism.

Bora Han, SVP of Translational Science, stated, “Treatment of hypoparathyroidism with PTH(1-34) has been shown to be more effective and less toxic when a continuous infusion-like profile is applied rather than bolus injections. Using our platform technology, a similar profile can be achieved for PTH(1-34) in a once-weekly dosing regimen.” Han added: “In addition, the added benefit of the simplified dosing regimen will improve patients comfort and compliance.”

About ProLynx: ProLynx is a biotechnology company located in San Francisco, CA,, developing proprietary drug delivery technologies for half-life extension of small molecules, peptides and proteins. ProLynx has an oncology drug, PLX038, entering Phase 2 clinical trials, a long-acting PARP inhibitor for oncology, a very long acting interleukin 15 for immuno-oncology and several other early stage programs.