The University of Nebraska Medical Center's nanoformulated antiretroviral therapy (nanoART) laboratories fill a void in the current treatment regimens for HIV/AIDS. Limitations in drug penetrance into viral reservoirs, the needs for lifelong daily regimens, pill fatigue and inherent toxicities are why long-acting reservoir targeted antiretroviral therapy is an immediate necessity. Originally created by Dr. Howard E. Gendelman, this is an integrative translational and multi-investigator research initiative seeking to develop nanoformulated antiretroviral drugs from the bench to the patient.
This need is compounded by suboptimal adherence of current regimens resulting in accelerated rates of viral mutation and consequent disease progression. Drug addiction, which is common in HIV/AIDS subject populations, affects virologic resistance to drugs due to poor adherence to medicines. Thus, the emergence of nanoART can substantively impact such concerns.
Cell-based nanoART was seen as a highly efficient means to generate sustained drug depots demonstrating limited tissue toxicities. Research success led to the formation of the Nebraska Nanomedicine Production Plant (NNPP). The company will develop cell-based (monocyte-macrophage carried) nanoART.
To these ends, the UNMC NanoART project will work toward manufacturing and characterizing stable nanosuspension dosages of long-acting drugs. It will conduct pharmacokinetic profiles of the formulations and will examine the efficacy of selected nanoformulations in human testing.Researchers at UNMC have partnered with large pharmaceutical collaborators to develop the nanoformulated drug delivery system. With the resources found in the NNPP, nanoART researchers can now scale-up production and develop the products long sought after to improve the care and even lay the groundwork for viral eradication of HIV infections.
For more information about the UNMC NanoART program, please visit its webpage.