The Lundquist Institute grants an external license to develop an artificial lung surfactant formula

An agreement that contributes to the development of artificial lung laboratories for the treatment of respiratory disorder syndrome in children at an advanced stage in low and middle income countries.

LOS ANGELES (March 8, 2021) – The Lundquist Institute (TLI) and the Bill & Melinda Gates Medical Research Institute (Gates MRI) have implemented a TLI Intellectual Property License Agreement covering a lung surfactant formulation to be developed for Respiratory Distress Syndrome (RDS) for premature babies in low-income countries And Middle Income (LMIC). TLI already holds patents for this invention in the United States, Canada, and Europe.

Newborns with respiratory distress syndrome (RDS) have to drastically increase the effort to take each breath, due to the lack of production of the normal surfactant in their lungs. This deficiency of pulmonary surfactant leads to fatigue, episodes of apnea, hypoxia, wasting, and potentially death if left untreated. The standard of care is to inject a naturally occurring surfactant, naturally derived from animals, into the lungs of premature babies – a definitive, life-saving treatment, but is only available in specialized neonatal care centers such as neonatal intensive care units.

“Commercially available surfactants are effective, but have limited use in low- and middle-income countries due to cost and extensive medical delivery methods.” Said Jared Silverman, Ph.D., President, Transitional Discovery, Bill & Melinda Gates Medical Research Institute.

“We are very pleased to have entered into this licensing agreement with the Gates Institute for Medical Research,” said David Meyer, Ph.D., President and CEO of TLI. “This agreement, and the opportunity to see this important technology being developed to treat respiratory distress syndrome in preterm infants from the population most in need, is what we seek in our translational and innovative research environment here at Lundquist.”

The combination, developed by TLI investigators with Dr. France Walter as the lead investigator, consists of at least one phospholipid and the synthetic B-YL peptide, which is an imitation of the original surfactant protein B.

“A naturally occurring pulmonary surfactant is a lipoprotein mixture that prevents lung collapse by reducing surface tension,” said Frans Walther, MD, Principal Investigator at Lundquist. “Pulmonary surfactant deficiency leads to respiratory distress syndrome in premature infants and can be treated by administering animal-derived surfactant into the trachea. Our research shows that inhaling a synthetic dry surfactant powder formula with an advanced protein surfactant analog can improve respiration and lung function in animals. “Surfactant deficient. This finding indicates that the licensed candidate may be effective as an intervention for preterm infants treated with non-invasive ventilation in under-resourced settings.”

“From the first lung surfactants used in the treatment of premature babies in the 1980s, to decades of work by Dr. Walter’s research group in developing and formulating artificial lung surfactants, TLI has always been at the forefront of innovation in this area,” Robayat said. , MS, TLI Director of Business Development and Technology Transfer. “We are delighted that Gates MRI is developing our new formulation into an alternative surfactant treatment to improve patient outcomes. The administration of surfactants to premature infants is often limited in developing countries due to high costs. Implementation of this license with the Gates MRI aims to expand access to surfactant therapy, Once it is approved, through developing countries, thus saving lives that would otherwise be lost. “


Contact the Lundquist Institute:

Max Benavides [email protected] 310-200-2682

To contact the Bill & Melinda Gates Institute for Medical Research:

Jane A. Kramer [email protected] 781-799-9524

About the Lundquist Institute: Research at Hand

The Lundquist Institute is an engine of innovation with a global reach and a 69-year reputation for improving and saving lives. With a new medical research building, state-of-the-art incubator, “BioLabs at The Lundquist”, the existing laboratory and supporting infrastructure, and the development of a new 15-acre business technology park, the Lundquist Institute serves as the epicenter of the thriving biotechnology scene in the Los Angeles area. The research institute has more than 100 principal researchers (PhD, PhD, MD / PhD) working on more than 600 research studies, including treatments for the numerous and often fatal orphan diseases.

About the Bill & Melinda Gates Institute for Medical Research

The Bill & Melinda Gates Institute for Medical Research is a biotechnology non-profit organization focused on medical research to accelerate product development for diseases and disorders that disproportionately affect the world’s poorest people – malaria, tuberculosis, diarrhea, maternal and newborn health disorders – conditions that together cause ten deaths. Every minute.

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