Vedanta Biosciences has recently been granted four U.S. patents covering pharmaceutical compositions of therapeutics targeting inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and other immune-mediated and infectious conditions.
The new patents protect Vedanta’s therapeutic candidates in development for the treatment of IBD, food allergies, and other autoimmune and infectious diseases. One of Vedanta’s lead investigational candidates, VE303, in development for the treatment of recurrent Clostridium difficile (C. difficile) infections, is also covered by the recent issuance.
VE303 is a novel human-microbiome candidate to address C. difficile and potentially other bacterial infections. The candidate is a live bacterial consortia administered via an oral capsule and is expected to be tested in a human clinical trial this quarter, according to an announcement made earlier in November this year.
More specifically, the patents cover compositions including Clostridium bacterial strains and methods of use for therapeutic products, including consortia of bacterial strains and spore-forming fractions based on beneficial bacteria.
The patents are exclusively licensed to Vedanta under an agreement made with the University of Tokyo in Japan, and provide coverage through at least 2031.
“The expansion of our intellectual property estate further establishes Vedanta’s leading IP position in the microbiome field and provides further recognition of the ground-breaking work of Vedanta Biosciences co-founder Dr. Kenya Honda,” Bernat Olle, PhD, chief executive officer of Vedanta, said in a press release. “We believe The University of Tokyo patents provide Vedanta a significant competitive advantage in the microbiome field in the development of drugs based on bacterial consortia.”
Vedanta has been investing in IBD therapeutics for years. In January 2015, Janssen Biotech signed a licensing agreement with Vedanta to acquire the rights to VE202, a new oral formulation of live Clostridium bacteria developed for the treatment of IBD, including ulcerative colitis (UC) or Crohn’s disease.
The experimental therapy revealed its efficacy in preclinical studies conducted in animal models of IBD and was included in a study published in Nature Biotechnology, in August 2015, under the title “Microbial cocktails join fecal transplants in IBD treatment trials;” However, its latest development has been kept under the radar.