Press release written by Charlotte Baker from Garnett Keeler PR.
Ambitious new biotech venture PHIOGEN has developed a world-first technology platform that mobilizes the natural power of bacteriophages to tackle critical and life-threatening infections, marking a significant medical breakthrough for countering the global threat of antimicrobial resistance. The globally renowned research team behind PHIOGEN is housed in the world’s largest medical complex inside the prestigious Texas Medical Center’s Innovation Hub in Houston, Texas.
PHIOGEN is a spin-off company from Baylor College of Medicine’s TAILOR Labs, one of the United States’ only academic phage therapy centers, built on over a decade’s worth of revolutionary research that is now being commercialized to treat populations of patients. PHIOGEN’s proprietary first-of-its-kind technology platform is capable of discovering and screening, at-scale, naturally occurring bacteriophages, singling out those with elite bacteria-fighting abilities, and directing biological changes to evolve the phage into antimicrobials which overcome resistance.
This technology creates a new business model for phage therapy as the group is able to create products which treat populations of people instead of on a per patient basis. By optimizing nature’s defenders, the team has produced unprecedented phage treatments which have already successfully saved the lives of several patients in FDA approved compassionate use cases.
Amanda Burkardt, CEO at PHIOGEN, said: “Nothing about our treatments is fabricated, it boils down to creating natural environments that mimic real-life infections, driving biological changes to create “super phages” against the superbugs. As a result, we receive high-performing phage fighters that are trained and ready to deliver safe and effective treatments for clinical applications.”
This new methodology holds the potential to play a major role in tackling the ongoing global health crisis of antimicrobial resistance dubbed ‘the silent pandemic’, which the World Health Organization (WHO) expects to be responsible for 10 million deaths annually by 2050. PHIOGEN’s R&D efforts are led by acclaimed phage researcher Dr. Anthony Maresso, founder of TAILOR Labs and an associate professor at Baylor College of Medicine, whose phage therapy work has attracted funding of more than $5 million to date.
The WHO deems drug resistant infections as one of the top 10 global public health threats facing humanity with estimates of over 5 million deaths worldwide attributed to antibiotic resistant infections. “Our patented technique of evolving the natural fighting power of bacteriophages creates a new paradigm in phage therapy where natural lytic cocktails carry the same advantages as fully synthetic phage and can be used to treat entire patient populations,” added Burkardt. “Rising antibiotic resistance is one of the greatest health challenges of modern times. In real terms, our safe and effective phage treatments have the potential to transform clinical outcomes and save lives.”
Amanda Burkardt, CEO at PHIOGEN
PHIOGEN™ is a trademark of PHIOGEN INC. PHIOGEN is an innovative biotech company housed in the Texas Medical Center’s Innovation Hub and is committed to using proven technology to deliver patient-ready bacteriophage products to tackle the most deadly and serious bacterial infections facing our world. PHIOGEN’s world-class patented process has received early proof of concept validation through several in vivo studies as well as use in patients under FDA approved compassionate use cases.
For more information: www.phiogenpharma.com