Overcoming short drug half-life using albumin
Various factors contribute to poor patient compliance; a challenge that is particularly observed for pharmaceuticals which are rapidly cleared from the body, ultimately requiring a higher or more frequent dosing.
By linking biopharmaceuticals to albumin, their short serum half-life can be significantly extended. As an example, the therapeutic efficacy of peptides is often limited due to their fast removal from the body - in some cases within minutes. Yet, through the association with albumin, their effect may be extended to weeks.
The long serum half-life of albumin is achieved in part by its size, 66 kDa, which prevents clearance through the kidney, and by its interaction with the neonatal Fc receptor (FcRn). Together, this results in albumin’s natural long half-life of approx. three weeks.
Extending drug half-life with the Veltis® technology
Our scientists have interrogated the interaction of albumin with FcRn and found that by selective modification of a few amino acids, the half-life of albumin can be dramatically extended, creating the foundation of the Veltis technology platform. Demonstrated in in vivo studies, our engineered albumin variants have shown more than double the half-life of native sequence albumin, along with its ability to enhance the therapeutic effect of associated drugs.Listen to Webinar
Achieved benefits with Veltis technology:
- Broad design flexibility - Covalent linkage of candidates to Veltis can be achieved by genetic fusion, either in yeast or mammalian cells, or chemical conjugation.
- Improved dosing regimen – Through prolonged exposure, Veltis enables the possibility to reduce dose frequency and/or concentration of pharmaceuticals otherwise requiring un-economical and sub-optimal dosing.
- Simpler formulation – By extending the time a pharmaceutical is held within the therapeutic window, drug developers can move from inconvenient administration routes and formulations to more patient friendly solutions.
Veltis enabled half-life extension already benefitting patients
Utilizing our native sequence albumin fusion technology, two products have already been approved in major markets. As an example, our Veltis technology is utilized by CSL Behring in their Idelvion® product, a recombinant coagulation factor IX-albumin fusion protein, revolutionizing treatment for hemophilia B patients through increased protection.