Snake venom derived protein to treat wet AMD
Angiogenesis is a cause of visual impairment and blindness in the wet form of Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD) and in ischemic retinopathies. AMD is the leading causes of blindness in people over 55 years of age, and ischemic retinopathies (diabetic retinopathy, retinal vein occlusion and retinopathy of prematurity), in people under 55.
Currently, anti-VEGF drugs are the only therapeutic solution in the market. However there are some side effects related to their administration and patients may become resistant to treatments.
A team from the Vision Institute has identified a molecule purified from snake venom, the Lebecetin, a C-type lectin, which targets αvβ3&5 integrins. Integrin αvβ3 and αvβ5 are critical regulators of endothelial cell proliferation and stabilization which are implicated in pathological ocular angiogenesis.
The team has developed a recombinant form which is as effective as the native form of the protein. This technology differs from other approaches: rather than targeting a molecule acting on both normal and pathological vessels, this compound specifically targets the development of pathological neovessels.
This approach ensures greater specificity of the treatment and limits the risk of side effects
SATT Lutech has fund a development program to bring a in vivo POC:
- Optimisation of Lebecetin
- Definition of the mechanism of action
- PK / PD and in vivo toxicology