iBio, Inc., receives patents for influenza antibodies

iBio, Inc., said on Thursday that it received two U.S. patents for monoclonal antibodies that target influenza by blocking critical functions of the virus necessary for infection or replication.

"Current public health strategies for influenza include annual preventative vaccination and the use of small molecule drugs for treatment in some cases," Wayne Fitzmaurice, the vice president of intellectual property at iBio, said. "However, because vaccines do not always prevent disease, and drug-resistant influenza strains pose increased risk, there is a global need for new, more effective biologics such as these antibodies to treat influenza infection."

iBio President Robert Erwin said the company expects the development of therapeutic antibodies and vaccines to increase commercial and government interest, which will lead to support and funding for research and pandemic prevention.

"Our iBioLaunch platform technology is ideally suited for vaccines and antibodies, and provides the efficiency and flexibility for simultaneous development of both types of products," Erwin said.

The technology was used during a successful Phase 1 evaluation of H1N1 influenza vaccine candidates. Additional applications of the technology are in development, including a vaccine for malaria and anthrax.

The patents were received for "Human Neuraminidase Antibody and Methods of Use Thereof," and " Influenza Hemagglutinin Antibodies, Compositions, and Related Methods." Both applications are based on inventions developed by research and technology collaborator Fraunhofer USA Center for Molecular Biotechnology and are owned by iBio.