- Runs five research and development programs targeting diabetes and obesity, pain, neurological disorders and cancer
- Developing CBD formula via Sol-gel nose-to-brain delivery system to fight coronavirus infection
- Seeking C$29.5 million from Canadian government to support Sol-gel program amid COVID-19 battle
What PreveCeutical Medical does
Headquartered in Vancouver, PreveCeutical currently has five research and development programs, including dual gene therapy for curative and prevention therapies for diabetes and obesity, and its Sol-gel program for the nose-to-brain delivery of medical compounds including cannabinoids (CBD) as well as non-addictive analgesic peptides as a replacement for morphine, fentanyl and oxycodone.
In July 2018, the firm launched its CBD division, which focuses on finding treatments for various ailments using CBD, which can be administered through the Sol-gel delivery system. With the use of an applicator, the sustained-released Sol-gel formulations allow for the direct and prolonged delivery of cannabinoids to a patient's central nervous system.
Amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, PreveCeutical and its Australian partner are now developing a Sol-gel CBD formula that could fight off the ability of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes the COVID-19 disease, to infect nasal tissue.
How it is doing:
The development of the Sol-gel program recently reached a milestone in June when PreveCeutical successfully fingerprinted the chemical composition of cannabinoids in the extracts used to formulate the gels.
The advancement will enable the standardized preparation of the extracts, allowing the company’s manufacturing partners to consistently control the quality of the chemical compositions from any given cannabis or hemp strain when making the Sol-gel formulations. Getting the formula right each time is crucial as some gels are designed to give a prolonged, controlled dosage. Also, the company needs a precise, consistent product that can pass regulatory scrutiny.
Going forward, PreveCeutical’s objectives now are to develop, commercialize, and seek other third party clinical-proven formulations to be infused with the Sol-gel platform to address central nervous system disorders such as neuropathic pain and multiple sclerosis.
In fact, the company in June extended an agreement with UniQuest Pty Ltd — which along with the University of Queensland helped PreveCeutical successfully develop the Sol-gel program — to use the Sol-gel formulation technology to create a potential coronavirus treatment. PreveCeutical will provide the CBD extract that researchers have identified as having anti-inflammatory properties and the potential to “reduce the ability of SARS-CoV-2 to infect nasal mucosa tissue.”
Researchers from the university will develop the CBD extract into a Sol-gel nasal formulation. It is expected to take around three months after the delivery of the CBD extract. PreveCeutical will be responsible for pre-clinical testing and have the rights to the program's intellectual property.
The company has also retained Massachusetts-based Veristat, a global clinical research organization (CRO), to help it prepare for clinical trials of Sol-Gel.
In the meantime, the company has requested funding of C$29.5 million from the Canadian government to support the Sol-gel program in a bid to battle COVID-19. Since September 2017, PreveCeutical has spent over C$750,000 in research, not including management and employee overheads, on the program.
In August, the group also received around A$1.23 million (US$833,966) in a cash rebate from the Australian Federal Government’s Research and Development (R&D) Incentive Program.
Another preventative therapy the company has also been advancing is its non-addictive analgesic peptide program to replace highly addictive drugs such as morphine, fentanyl and oxycodone. It is also being studied as a therapeutic product for treating athletes suffering from concussions.
The company recently completed a preclinical study of a dynorphin pain peptide on rats that “demonstrated effectiveness in alleviating moderate inflammatory pain” after administration of a single dose. Researchers plan to test other shortlisted peptides in the in-vivo rat model.
PreveCeutical is also seeing encouraging preliminary results from its research and development program that is expected to enable the company to generate key peptide therapeutics for use in treatments of brain cancer. Preliminary screening in an aggressive brain cancer assay successfully identified four lead peptides that inhibit the activity of a target protein found in the progression in certain glioblastomas. The firm also is involved in a study that uses blue scorpion venom-derived peptides to treat brain cancer.
It also focused on research into dual gene therapy targeting type 2 diabetes and obesity. The program is looking at proprietary chemistry toward the single gene target that is implicated in type 2 diabetes and obesity, which reduces the capacity to store fat as well as reverse obesity and fatty liver disease.
PreveCeutical’s gene-silencing technology would effectively “turn off” the genetic signal which leads to the over-production of this key protein molecule, bringing it back down to safe, normalized levels. This would in turn help cells to absorb glucose, thus reducing blood sugar levels and prevent the body from storing excessive fat from food.
The company has bolstered its team in recent months, with the appointment of its chief scientific officer Dr Makarand Jawadekar as president. Jawadekar, who is also a director of PreveCeutical, previously spent 28 years at Pfizer (NYSE:PFE), where he served as director of portfolio management. The firm has also appointed Edward James Henderson as the public officer and director of its PreveCeutical (Australia) Pty Ltd. subsidiary.
- Team with third-parties to make formulations for Sol-gel platform
- Develop quickly CBD Sol-gel formula to prevent SARS-CoV-2 infection in nasal tissue
- Test other identified peptides in in-vivo rat model
- Forge partnerships on brain cancer studies connected to blue scorpion venom-derived peptides
- Complete current stage of research into disulfide linker technology in engineering analgesic peptides
What the boss says:
"Having such an opportunity now to develop a CBD Sol-gel formulation, which could potentially help in COVID-19 exposed patients, is very exciting to us," said CEO Stephen Van Deventer. "PreveCeutical is hopeful to be a part of the search for the COVID-19 pandemic solution.”