This week, we’re in the Bavarian region of Germany to check out XL-Protein, a biotech that improves drug delivery by modifying the drugs we use to help them stay in the body for longer.
Mission: XL-Protein has found a way to slow down the speed at which a drug is removed from the body. PASylation attaches a polypeptide containing proline, alanine, and serine to the therapeutic compound, which produces a larger, bulkier fusion peptide. This modification is enough to significantly slow down the clearance of the drug.
This has many benefits for the drug, including an increased half-life and enhanced therapeutic action, which means less frequent, lower doses are sufficient to treat the patient. So far, the technology has been combined with drugs for a wide range of diseases, including HIV, multiple sclerosis, and cancer.
Comment: With drug development being such a long process, it is important to get the absolute best out of those that reach the market. By combining XL-Protein’s technique with drugs that are being brought to the market, patients may be able to enjoy an even better quality of treatment.
XL-Protein is one of many biotechs that are active in this field. One of the most exciting technologies that I have come across in this area is a caterpillar-like robot, which can be navigated through the body by applying different magnetic fields.
Images – Jazzmany / shutterstock.com