Applied DNA Sciences Inc. ("Applied DNA" or the "Company") announced that LineaRx, Inc. ("LineaRx"), its wholly-owned subsidiary focused on next-generation biotherapeutics, has signed a Joint Development Agreement (the "Agreement") with Takis S.R.L. and Evvivax S.R.L. ("Takis/Evvivax"), biotechnology companies focused on the discovery and development of DNA based anti-cancer vaccines for the human and animal markets, respectively.
Under the terms of the Agreement, LineaRx and Takis/Evvivax will jointly develop linear DNA expression vectors for two of Takis/Evvivax's anti-cancer vaccine candidates utilizing LineaRx's linear DNA technology. Linear DNA amplicons carrying the DNA sequences for Takis/Evvivax vaccine candidates will be delivered to preclinical animal models via Takis/Evvivax's proprietary electroporation technology. Antigen-specific immune responses aimed at achieving therapeutic effects will be studied.
The previously announced collaboration between the companies has already shown promise of yielding immunity in mice that were DNA-vaccinated against the human protein telomerase, which is over-expressed in more than 85% of all cancers.
Dr. Luigi Aurisicchio, CEO of Takis/Evvivax stated: "We are excited to co-develop linear DNA expression vectors for our DNA vaccine candidates with LineaRx. Initial data from the use of LineaRx's amplicons in our vaccine candidates is promising. The advantages of linear DNA over plasmids would provide a clear market edge over plasmid-based DNA sources. We look forward to a mutually beneficial collaboration".
"This Agreement serves to validate LineaRx's technology as critical and necessary to the field of biotherapeutics in its ability to deliver potentially powerful approaches to the treatments of chronic diseases," stated Dr. James Hayward, president and CEO of Applied DNA. "Takis/Evvivax are ideal partners of LineaRx given their innovative anti-cancer vaccine candidates for both humans and animals together with their expertise in preclinical animal models."
Dr. Hayward continued, "The use of PCR-produced linear DNA, as opposed to bacterially produced plasmids, is an innovative concept that provides the potential for increased patient safety, ease of manufacture and vaccine logistics, and reduced costs. Our know-how in the fields of bulk linear DNA production and in bioconjugate chemistry enable us to create novel and highly efficient expression vectors."
With their stability at room temperature, low risk of infection or secondary illness, and stability during transportation, DNA vaccines overcome many of the undesirable properties of conventional vaccines. The global DNA based human vaccine market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 55% and reach a value of $2.7 billion by 2019. The global veterinary vaccine market is expected to reach $20.6 billion by 2021, with DNA based animal vaccines gaining rapid market share.