Chronic infections (lungs, wounds, eyes) are typically due to bacterial biofilm infection and are untreatable with commercially available antibiotics. In up to 80% of patients with Pseudomonas aeruginosa infection, there will be no response to antibiotics.
Currently for P. aeruginosa, aminoglycoside and colistin are mainstay therapy. Therapy can be lifelong with the goal of keeping the infection at bay, not focused on eradication. New formulation techniques are focusing on liposomal formulations; however, these have stability, manufacturing and effectivity issues that are restricting their entry into the market.
LCNPs (blue cubes in schematic) are lipids swollen in water, composed of Generally Recognised as Safe (GRAS) ingredients. In comparison to unformulated and liposomal tobramycin formulations, LCNPs can improve the penetration of the antibiotics across the biofilm and bacterial cellular membrane, improving the overall antimicrobial effect. In advanced human based cellular cultures of cystic fibrotic lung cells infected with P. aeruginosa biofilms, the LCNPs containing tobramycin eradicated the infection within two days and maintained a healthy, uninfected epithelium after stopping the treatment. Tobramycin (unformulated) could not eradicate the infection and once therapy was stopped, resulted in the lung cell culture dying.
The LCNPs can also enhance the antimicrobial activity of all aminoglycoside and other cationic antibiotics, like colistin. Which can be used to treat other local infections, such as wounds, eyes and ear infections.
Provisional patent filed.
Pharmaceutical companies interested in reformulation of cationic antimicrobials.
UniSA Ventures are seeking licencing, co-development and contract research.