Categories Analysis, Health Care

Ocean Biomedical’s chief scientist Dr. Jonathan Kurtis receives Falk Award for malaria drug candidate

The $1-million award is for malaria drug candidate addressing evolving resistance to artemisinin-based therapeutics

Biotechnology company Ocean Biomedical, Inc. (NASDAQ: OCEA) on Tuesday said its chief scientist, Jonathan Kurtis MD, PhD has received the prestigious Falk Medical Research Trust Transformational Award to advance a new class of anti-malarial drug candidates.

Ocean Biomedical is engaged in the development of therapeutic discoveries with the potential to achieve life-changing outcomes in cancer, pulmonary fibrosis, and malaria research. It has a promising pipeline of late-stage pre-clinical assets in these areas.

Groundbreaking Research

Dr. Kurtis’ malaria drug program stems from his groundbreaking malaria vaccine research, targeting a critical stage of the malaria cycle. The program includes a therapeutic small-molecule drug candidate for treating severe malaria and a therapeutic antibody for short-term malaria prevention. It is designed to address the growing resistance to the current best-in-class Artemisinin-based medicines.

(Source: Ocean Biomedical, Inc.)

Dr. Kurtis, who is one of the company’s co-founders, commented, “It has become increasingly apparent that a new, more effective class of antimalarials is needed, especially to combat severe malaria. We believe that our therapeutic candidates could provide a comprehensive defense against some of the most devastating forms of the disease, and I am grateful to the Falk Medical Research Trust for recognizing this new paradigm for malaria drug development.”

Crucial Findings

After working on vaccine development for decades, Dr. Kurtis and his team have made a series of discoveries that have allowed them to hone in on three key targets in the ‘blood stage’ of the malaria cycle, each critical to a different segment of that stage: invasion, intracellular development, and egress from the cell. Kurtis is working to optimize Ocean Biomedical’s vaccine candidate to potentially target all three segments of the blood stage simultaneously, an advanced effort that even before the COVID-19 vaccine was using the mRNA delivery platform.

The company’s malaria drug program grew out of the vaccine effort, and has already demonstrated that the family of small molecule drugs in development by Dr. Kurtis’ team are highly specific for PfGARP binding, are non-toxic in multiple in vitro and in vivo systems, have excellent pharmacokinetic properties, and rapidly clear parasitemia in animal models.

Listen to the conference calls as they happen. Don't miss a beat! With AlphaStreet Intelligence, you can listen to live calls and interviews as they happen, so you never have to worry about missing out on important information.

Most Popular

Important takeaways from Broadcom’s (AVGO) Q4 2023 earnings

Semiconductor company Broadcom, Inc. (NASDAQ: AVGO) ended fiscal 2023 on a positive note, delivering strong results for the fourth quarter. In the new fiscal year, the company’s focus will be

Here’s what Signet Jewelers (SIG) expects for the holiday season and beyond

Shares of Signet Jewelers Limited (NYSE: SIG) were down over 2% on Friday. The stock has gained 40% year-to-date and 27% over the past three months. The jewelry retailer saw

DOCU Earnings: DocuSign Q3 2024 revenue up 9%; profit beats estimates

eSignature service provider DocuSign, Inc. (NASDAQ: DOCU) reported higher revenues and better-than-expected adjusted earnings for the third quarter of 2024. The company also provided guidance for the fourth quarter and

Add Comment
Viewing Highlight