Wound healing technology developed at Drexel University is one step closer to becoming a tool for medical caregivers. Eqalix, Inc., a Northern Virginia regenerative medicine device company, recently received patent protection for a protein-based nanofiber scaffold technology invented by Drexel researchers.
U.S. Patent No. 8,790,921, entitled “Alimentary Protein-Based Scaffolds (APS) for Wound Healing, Regenerative Medicine and Drug Discovery” is an important step for Eqalix, the company that licensed the technology from Drexel, as it seeks to bring it to market as a product called OmegaSkin™.
“This patent covering Eqalix’s OmegaSkin™ wound dressing is an important milestone in our effort to commercialize this technology and recognition of the highly innovative approach to replace human and animal sources for advanced wound dressings with an easier to harvest and process and less costly plant source,” said Thomas Seoh, Eqalix president and chief executive officer.
OmegaSkin™ is made from natural soy proteins in contrast to current wound dressing options made from human sources such as neonatal foreskin or cadaver skin, or animal sources such as cows, horses or pigs. It was developed by researchers in Drexel’s School of Biomedical Engineering, Science and Health Systems with funding from the Coulter-Drexel Translational Research Partnership Program.
“This patent issuance, covering a unique and highly original invention that was made with partial financial support of the Coulter-Drexel Translational Research Partnership Program funded by the Walter H. Coulter Foundation, adds to Drexel’s growing leadership in the generation of important biomedical technologies,” said Kenneth Barbee, PhD, interim director designate of the School of Biomedical Engineering, Science and Health Systems.
In May, data were published in the medical journal, Wound Medicine, showing pre-clinically relevant healing in wounds treated with OmegaSkin™ compared to those treated with a control dressing in a pig model of wound healing. Eqalix plans to file appropriate product applications with the Food and Drug Administration and other regulatory bodies to obtain marketing approval for the management of a range of acute and chronic wounds.
Eqalix is a regenerative medicine company based in Reston, Virginia, USA that is developing a novel plant protein-based tissue scaffold product candidate intended to treat acute and chronic wounds, a small diameter vascular graft product candidate that may promote re-endothelialization, and other product candidates for tissue repair and regeneration. For more information, visit www.eqalix.com.
About The Coulter-Drexel Translational Research Partnership Program
The Coulter-Drexel Translational Research Partnership Program invests in translational research aimed at advancing biomedical technologies toward commercialization under the guidance of the Coulter Program Director’s office and a team of advisors consisting of investors and representatives of industry and regional economic development agencies. The program was established and endowed by the Wallace H. Coulter Foundation with $10 million, which was matched by Drexel University, for a $20 million fund to support the program in perpetuity.
Under U.S. law, a new device cannot be marketed until it has been approved or cleared by the Food and Drug Administration, which may require the conduct of clinical trials. OmegaSkin™ has not received approval or clearance from the FDA for sale in the U.S. Statements included in this press release that are not historical in nature are "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the "safe harbor" provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Our actual results could differ materially from those contained in the forward-looking statements, which are based on management's current expectations and are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, including, but not limited to, our failure to complete development of, procure required FDA clearances or approvals for, and successfully commercialize our product candidates; costs and delays (including any requirement for additional studies beyond those currently planned); and our inability to obtain financing required to execute on our business plans, including generating the required data for and preparing and filing clearance or approval applications for our product candidates. We do not intend to update any of these factors or to publicly announce the results of any revisions to these forward-looking statements.