DiaMedica enters into agreement with NIAID for tularemia treatment

DiaMedica announced this week that it has entered into an evaluation agreement with the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases to further examine its monoclonal antibody for the treatment of the potential bioweapon tularemia.

Tularemia is caused by the Francisella tularensis bacteria, a pathogen classified as a Class A bioweapon due to being a highly infectious and hazardous agent when dispensed with aerosols. It is considered to be a pathogen most likely to be used as a biological warfare or bioterrorism agent.

The current LVS vaccine for F. tularensis has not been fully licensed nor does it offer a high level of protection against respiratory challenges.

The animal study of the pre-clinical monoclonal antibody will be conducted by the University of New Mexico under a screening program offered by NIAID’s Division of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases.

If the novel mAb yields positive results in treating tularemia in animals, an investigational new drug application would be the next stage in the process.

DiaMedica is a Winnipeg, Canada-based biopharmaceutical company that develops therapeutic products designed to fight Types 1 and 2 diabetes as well as other large, medically-unmet diseases. Its lead drug, DM-199, has been shown to significantly improve glucose metabolism and protect and proliferate beta cells.