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Challenge Seeks GI Tract Drug Delivery in Animals


(Stefanie Drenkow-Lolies, Pixabay)

24 March 2017. A new challenge offered through InnoCentive is aiming for solutions to protect biological drugs delivered into the gastrointestinal, or GI, tract of animals. The competition has a total prize purse of $20,000 and a deadline for submissions of 22 May 2017.

The challenge is conducted by InnoCentive in Waltham, Massachusetts that conducts open-innovation, crowdsourcing competitions for corporate and organization sponsors. In this case, the sponsor is anonymous. Free registration is required to see details of the competition.

The challenge sponsor requires a method for delivery of biological drug molecules, such as proteins and peptides, for animals in their feed, to be released in the animals’ GI tracts. Getting biologic therapies to the GI tract, however, is difficult, due to the chemical conditions encountered along the way, such as low pH and digestive enzymes, that can alter the nature of the treatments.

In addition, stability of biologic drugs can be affected by heat, as well as manufacturing and storage conditions that degrade biological molecules. As a result, the sponsor is seeking solutions that protect the integrity and activity of biological therapies designed for delivery to the GI tracts of animals.

InnoCentive calls this type of competition, a theoretical-licensing challenge that requires submission of a written proposal. In a theoretical challenge, participants generally describe an idea still in development and not yet reached the proof-of-concept stage. Proposals often contain detailed descriptions, specifications, and requirements for bringing the idea closer to fruition as an actual product or service.

The sponsor expects to ask for non-exclusive rights to the ideas proposed by the winning entries, due by 22 May 2017. While the competition has a total purse of $20,000, the sponsor has not yet announced the number or amounts of prizes to be awarded.

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