Midatech Pharma-led consortium wins €7.9m in funding

For project to scale-up manufacturing of gold nanoparticle-based therapeutics for diabetes and rare cancers

A consortium led by Midatech Pharma based in Abingdon in the UK is to receive a project grant of €7.9m from Horizon 2020, the EU research and innovation programme backed by the European Commission (EC). The grant will fund the manufacturing scale-up of clinical-grade nanopharmaceuticals including those based on Midatech’s gold nanoparticle (GNP) technology for use in clinical trials and in preparation for commercial production.

Of the total amount, €3.4m is for Midatech directly, with the balance going to international consortium partners that will be involved in the project entitled: NANO-FACTURING – The Development of Medium- and Large-Scale Sustainable Manufacturing Process Platforms for Clinically Compliant Solid Core Nanopharmaceuticals.

NANO-FACTURING is a scalable manufacturing platform to be developed by Midatech to support the wide range of nanopharmaceutical products being developed in Europe, including its own GNP-based drug conjugate candidates. It aims to address the small- and medium-scale needs of early phase clinical trials and niche applications, while also supporting the development of clinically compliant, sustainable large scale manufacturing processes capable of taking these products through Phase III trials into commercial manufacture and supply into large potential markets.

Other members of the NANO-FACTURING consortium include: Centre for Process Innovation Limited (UK); Prochimia Surfaces (Poland); Galchimia (Spain); University College Dublin, National University of Ireland (Ireland); LGAI Technological Centre (Spain); IFOM, Fondazione Istituto FIRC di Oncologia Molecolare (Italy); and Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (Switzerland).

Midatech is applying its GNP technology platform to the treatment of diabetes and a range of orphan oncology indications including brain, liver, pancreatic and ovarian cancer. Its leading product, MidaForm-Insulin-PharmaFilm, which enables the delivery of insulin through the cheek of a diabetic patient, is anticipated to begin Phase IIa clinical studies early next year, with results expected to be available later in 2015.

Dr Jim Philips, CEO of Midatech, said: 'The funding and the skills and expertise of the consortium members will be invaluable as we look to scale-up the manufacturing of our GNP-based therapeutics for the treatment of diabetes and rare cancers. The production of these nanomedicines in the quantities and quality needed for clinical testing will enable Midatech to progress our portfolio of product candidates through clinical development to commercial production and ultimately deliver these improved therapeutics to patients.'

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