The DNA-TRAP project is designed to facilitate the exchange of knowledge and technology between 2 leading European research organisations and 4 SMEs (Small and Medium Enterprises) each with an interest in researching the fundamental properties of nanostructured drug delivery systems.
Antimicrobial agents, such as antibiotics, have dramatically reduced the number of deaths from infectious diseases over the last 70 years. However, through overuse and misuse of these agents, many micro-organisms have developed antimicrobial resistance. Oligonucleotide therapeutics have the potential to become the new class of antibacterials capable of treating a broad range of infections. By acting on novel targets, they circumvent current resistance mechanisms and with judicious use, can suppress the rise of future resistance. DNA-TRAP will build on a platform technology (developed by Procarta Biosystems Ltd) that uses proprietary nucleic acid-based Transcription Factor Decoys (TFDs) that act on novel genomic targets by capturing key regulatory proteins to block essential bacterial genes and defeat infection. Taking forward newly emerging insights and expertise that exists within each of the partners and through the mutual secondment of researchers, the project aims to develop a new class of nanoparticulate antibacterials capable of meeting the clinical challenge of drug-resistant infections such as Clostridium difficile and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. DNA-TRAP will establish a lasting, international partnership for transfer of knowledge between Industry and Academia in the field of nanomedicine. Exchange of knowledge and expertise between the partners is key to establishing the fundamental properties of nanostructured drug delivery systems to treat bacterial infections and through this, provide the basis for building a manufacturing platform to advance the experimental therapeutic into clinical trials. 17 researchers in the field of drug development and delivery from 4 commercial (SME) and 2 non-commercial partners across 2 member states, will have the opportunity to share and acquire new complementary and multidisciplinary knowledge, through inter-sectoral and interdisciplinary exchange, allowing for the development of new solutions and the establishment of further joint research projects.
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