The Lipid Vector Technology (LVT) is a unique proprietary technology platform that enables Clavis Pharma to create New Chemical Entities (NCEs) by significantly improving already well-established drugs. These new NCEs may offer improved efficacy and reduced side effects.
Some of the potential benefits of these LVT products are:
- Bypassing drug resistance
- Improved efficacy
- Personalised medicine through biomarker driven patient selection
- Prolonged effect and improved safety profile
Nucleoside drugs depend on nucleoside transporters to enter cancer cells where they exert their cytotoxic effect by inhibiting DNA synthesis and preventing cancer cell division and proliferation. Clavis Pharma is investigating the potential of these transporters to be biomarkers for the development of companion diagnostics that will help select patients who might benefit from treatment with an LVT drug.
Unique LVT technology platform
Lipid Vector Technology involves chemically linking a specific lipid (vector) to a selected pharmaceutical agent (parent drug). The new molecule thus created is a New Chemical Entity (NCE) that can be patented. A large number of the Company’s NCEs covering a wide range of therapeutic areas have in model systems demonstrated enhanced biological performance compared to the parent drug. Clavis Pharma has shown that a variety of drug characteristics can be improved by linking fatty lipids to a drug.
Focus on improved cancer drugs
The Company’s initial focus has been to apply LVT to marketed cancer chemotherapy products with well-characterised properties, thus providing a clear demonstration of the benefits of LVT. Most pharmaceutical products have potential for improvement in efficacy and fewer side effects. Many products also have room for improvement in characteristics such as bioavailability and pharmacokinetics, which might lead to better dosing schedules or more convenient/less expensive routes of administration.
Although cancer products often prolong life rather than cure the disease, many such products are ‘blockbusters’ (annual sales over USD 1 billion). This is evidence of the continuing unmet medical need in cancer therapy and the great opportunity for improvement by introducing safer and more efficacious versions of existing drugs. Clavis Pharma has developed an extensive library of LVT-improved compounds, many of which have the potential to improve both the original drug’s efficacy and safety profiles.
LVT addresses drug resistance in cancer cells
Drugs that need to enter cells to reach their targets often involve tightly controlled transport mechanisms within the cellular membrane that are specific to the class of compounds in question. Sometimes the level of drug flow through such transport mechanisms (influx) restricts the amount of drug transported into a cell thereby limiting the efficacy of the drug. In preclinical models, new drug candidates derived using LVT have been found to overcome such insufficient transport into cells resulting in several-fold increases in cellular uptake.