EktoTherix™: regenerative tissue scaffold for repair of surgical excision wounds17th Jul 2013

EktoTherix™: regenerative tissue scaffold for repair of surgical excision wounds
The problem

The incidence of non-melanoma skin cancers has been growing worldwide by at least 5% per annum for the past 40 years. Therefore the simplification and enhancement of treatment together with associated healthcare cost savings are key clinical and budgetary needs for healthcare providers worldwide.

The technology

EktoTherix™ is a bioresorbable “tissue scaffold” material that assists in patient tissue repair and regeneration. The product is formed via a polymer electrospinning process, and the highly porous scaffold structure supports the migration and proliferation of fibroblasts from surrounding healthy skin tissue by providing cells with a 3D architecture of ultra-fine fibres along which to migrate and populate the wound space (see images). Having done its job, the scaffold structure begins to break down and the fibres are completely resorbed by the healing tissue after approximately four weeks.

The EktoTherix™ patch is applied following excision of the basal or squamous cell carcinoma, and this rapidly allows the wound space to be filled with (and then covered by) the patients’ own skin cells. EktoTherix will thus provide improved repair (simplification of treatment and enhanced patient outcomes). Neotherix’ initial clinical target concerns the post-surgical treatment of non-melanoma skin cancers and the repair of other “acute” wounds such as lacerations and surgical wounds. Potentially, EktoTherix also has applications for the treatment of chronic wounds.

Through two rounds of funding from the Technology Strategy Board (TSB) Regenerative Medicine programme, we have demonstrated the ability of EktoTherix to repair wounds and facilitate blood vessel formation to ensure good tissue viability using an industry-standard pre-clinical wound model and have developed EktoTherix to demonstrator/proof of concept stage.

The EktoTherix consortium has since secured further TSB funding to take the therapy into the final development stage of clinical trials. The ongoing Developing Therapeutics 2 project will run until August 2014 and will include all the steps needed for a development product to be approved for first in man clinical trials (scheduled for early 2014) and for the submission of a CE mark application. Target for market launch is mid-2015. The estimated global market for EktoTherix is over £850m per annum.

The team


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