LEXINGTON, Ky.,–Demeetra AgBio, Inc., a pre-clinical therapeutics development and genetic engineering company, announced that it is advancing a broad pipeline for therapeutic cannabinoids and expects to file an Investigational New Drug Application for its lead candidate with the FDA early next year.
Demeetra’s proprietary Cas-CLOVER™ gene editing tool in combination with its bioprocessing capabilities will allow it to discover and manufacture rare and novel cannabinoids, creating wide-ranging opportunities for clinical and consumer applications.
In a recent CRISPR Medicine News feature, Demeetra CEO Jack Crawford says, “many of the 120+ cannabinoids already produced naturally in cannabis [are] not produced at levels sufficient for R&D and commercial manufacturing. There are also significant opportunities to enhance natural cannabinoids for therapeutic purposes by using gene editing in combination with synthetic biotechnology…we are working towards building a platform of virtually unlimited bio product candidates.”
Demeetra is leveraging its precision gene editing tools in combination with traditional breeding techniques to manufacture specialized plants and other bioprocessing systems that produce targeted therapeutic cannabinoids. It is using a synthetic biotechnology approach in yeast to produce very rare and novel cannabinoid-like molecules. Demeetra is also developing processes to manufacture biotherapeutics at scale, using yeast and Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cell lines as bioprocess platforms. Demeetra has partnered with big pharma and contract manufacturers alike in the biotherapeutics space.
Collaborations in Cannabis
Demeetra is advancing a pipeline of therapeutic cannabinoids and plans to file an IND in Q1 of 2022 for its lead candidate. “We have built very robust internal manufacturing and processing using the cannabis plant where we routinely achieve 20% yield in the plant and then isolate to 99.9% purity on a kilogram scale,” said Mr. Crawford. “There is literally unlimited potential here.”
Crawford added, “What we are missing are processes for successful gene editing in the cannabis plant and we believe this will require some collaboration with cannabis genomics experts.” Demeetra is currently requesting collaboration opportunities toward this goal. For more information, please contact Demeetra’s business development group, The Workdom Team [email protected].