Irish Immunology Specialists, Opsona Therapeautics, Receive 33m Investment.

A Trinity College Dublin spin-out, Opsona Therapeutics, has received a 33m fund to aid the developemnt of one of its drugs. The drug, OPN-305, which protects the body from rejection of donor kidneys is set to undergo a Phase II clinical trial in the following months where its tolerability, efficacy and safety will be tested.

OPN-305 inhibits Toll-like receptors (TLRs) which are responsible for the recognition of pathogens and damaged tissue. TLRs do this by recognising certain molecular patterns specific to these phenomena. Two responses are triggered: Innate and adaptive responses. The innate response is a general and immediate response which is non-specific and can actually cause damage to healthy tissue. The Adaptive response are more specific, but take longer to activate. These processes are what help keep our bodies free of infection, but are also triggered by donor organs, which the body recognises as foreign and attacks accordingly.

Organ transplant is only the initial target of the drug, which Opsona says can tackle rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, lupus, nephritis, various cancers and ischemia/reperfusion injuries.

The unprecedented fund has received funding by such multinationals as Baxter, Novartis, BB Biotech, Roche and Seroba.

This is a massive boost for Opsona, who in just nine short years have gone from a small start up based out of TCD to being one of Europe’s most innovative and dynamic drug developers.

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About the author: Conor Hughes works as a Marketing Executive at Life Science Recruitment

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