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GangaGen developing a phage-derived recombinant protein to target gram negative pathogens including E.coli

Nandita Vijay, Bangalore
Friday, June 10, 2011, 08:00 Hrs  [IST]

Bangalore-based GangaGen Biotechnologies is developing a phage-derived recombinant protein that targets gram negative pathogens including E.coli. The product is in preclinical development. Due to its novel mode of action, it is expected to kill antibiotic-resistant strains including the organisms that harbour NDM-1 resistance.

“The current outbreak is limited to Europe and is not a problem in India at this point of time. We plan to obtain this strain from Europe and evaluate the efficacy of our product as soon as possible,” Dr Janakiraman Ramachandran, president, GangaGen Biotechnologies, the Indian subsidiary of Gangagen Inc told Pharmabiz in an email interaction.

The present occurrence  of E.coli infection in Europe appears to be due to a novel strain of the pathogen that is different from E.coli 0157:H7.

The cocktail of phages developed by GangaGen against E.coli 0157:H7 was for the control of the pathogen in cattle. For this research, the  company had collaborated with Elanco Animal Health, a division of Eli Lily to bring its first product into the market next year for food safety to control E. coli 0157 in cattle. “The collaboration with Elanco ended in 2007 and a Danish company has licensed the product,” he added.

GangaGen's first product is P 128, a phage-derived recombinant protein that kills Staph aureus including the antibiotic-resistant MRSA rapidly by a novel mechanism. P 128 has completed all preclinical studies and is ready to enter phase I/II trials soon. P 128 is highly selective and kills only Staph, stated Dr Ramachandran.

GangaGen, Inc. is a biotechnology company focused on the development of proprietary products for the prevention and treatment of bacterial infections, particularly infections that are resistant to antibiotics, through the application of contemporary molecular and clinical sciences. The company's technology has arisen from its studies of bacteriophage, nature’s antibiotics.

The company’s strategy is to maximize efficiency through cost-effective R & D operations in Bangalore, and it is now engaged in the treatment of commercially significant infections that require the most straightforward and least expensive clinical trials.

The 11-year old company was founded by Dr J Ramachandran in Bangalore, to develop novel therapies for treating antibiotic-resistant infection. Based on the emerging opportunities for treating bacterial infection in the medical, veterinary, agricultural and environmental settings globally, and the interest of investors in the US and Canada, GangaGen Inc was incorporated as a Delaware Corporation in August 2001. The long-term objective of the company is to commercially develop products to control multiple species of bacteria pathogenic to humans, particularly antibiotic-resistant strains, based on its knowledge of bacteriophage. The company is  working on specific human, initially topical, applications where there is an opportunity to shorten the long product development timeline by focusing on those indications that require shorter clinical trials and enable faster regulatory approval.


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