ADVANCED MEDICAL PROJECTS

WE ARE INTERESTED IN STOPPING AND REVERTING THE MOLECULAR CLOCK IN HUMAN CELLS. BY DOING THIS,WE AIM TO TREAT MANY HUMAN DISEASES WHERE AGING HAPPENS TOO FAST .

ABOUT US

Advanced Medical Projects is a biotechnology company with presence in Madrid and Boston, interested in rare diseases caused by DNA stability, oxidative stress and low telomerase activity, also in syndromes caused by accelerated aging where the previous factors are proved very important. Most of these diseases are pediatric, like dyskeratosis congenita or ataxia telangiectasia, but some are present in adults, like idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. We follow a “bottom-up” approach to research, so we study many different aspects of aging, telomerase function and chromosome stability to understand basic biological and physiological areas. Once we understand basic principles, we look for mechanisms able to act over some particular biochemical and genetic pathway.
AMP is the first company to develop a patented family of human peptides as a therapeutic product candidates able to increase Telomerase activity in senescent cells, increase DNA repair and also increase cell response against oxidative stress. Most of drugs are mostly developed as PLGA encapsulated principles to be administered as i.v. once or twice per month. Telomerase is a molecular complex of very difficult biomedical manipulation; its role is to maintain the length of telomeres, which are special DNA sequences located at the end of chromosomes to protect them from degradation.
Working on oxidative stress, we have developed a new drug against Fragile X Syndrome, that already passed Clinical Phase III. Patients treated with the drug, versus those treated with the placebo, have shown very clear improvement in cognitive and learning capacities and functions. We plan to bring this drug to patients by the end of 2015.
As cells divide in normal life, telomeres become shorter and shorter, and eventually the cell becomes senescent, does not repair its DNA and suffers more and more from oxidative stress. Abnormal telomere shortening means abnormal aging and also increase of mutations that may cause cancer. On the other hand, oxidative stress is a key factor in fibrosis processes.
Our patented GSE24-2 peptides have already demonstrated in vitro potential in several diseases, including cancer, Dyskeratosis Congenita, Werner Syndrome, Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis, etc. GSE24-2 is currently in preclinical studies, in animal models, and based on the results generated so far we hope to reach very soon studies in human patients. Currently, we are also developing new administration platforms for these peptides, able to guarantee safety and correct dosage.
Finally, the company has also developed a complete line of cosmetics products using some of its patented molecules. These products are marketed worldwide and we reinvest 100% of all profits in the development of these pediatric drugs.

RARE DISEASE DAY

 

At Advanced Medical Projects we are thrilled to participate in Rare Disease Day! It´s held on the last day of February each year and thanks to this event we are able to represent the number of families who suffer every day with these diseases. The main objective of this day is to raise awareness. Many cities are participating in this event on this day and we are glad to be in one of them. 

Year after year we do what we can to help spread the word about rare diseases.

PROJECTS

Advanced Medical Projects is a small holding of biotechnology and biocosmetics companies. Our scientific focus is on DNA stability and its role in disease and aging. Since we are very interested in developing therapies against cancer and other diseases, diagnostics and delivery are also areas we work actively in. Finally, trying to cure diseases related to senescence, we discovered that our molecules have an amazing potential to slow down normal aging, which makes extremely powerful cosmetics once they are combined with our nanoencapsidation technologies. We describe here all the areas where our holding works actively.

Senescence Syndromes

Cellular aging appears to be related to and perhaps caused by diminished DNA repair. To elucidate direct correlations between DNA repair capacity and senescence various parameters of cellular aging and DNA repair are studied simultaneously. Of special interest to us are features of DNA repair and senescence in cultured cells derived either from healthy or elderly probands as well as from patients suffering from premature senescence syndromes including Werner syndrome, Cockayne syndrome, dyskeratosis congenita and Down syndrome. We, and others, have seen the striking parallelism between reduced maximal lifespan, elevated levels of spontaneous chromosomal breaks, higher incidence of formation of micronuclei, a significant prolongation of cell cycle duration and above all, a diminished level of telomerase activity. Since DNA stability and telomere length are crucial in aging, some forms of cancer and senescence syndromes, we are developing new biomoléculas able to increase telomerase activity in patients. So far, in vitro and in vivo results have been so promising that we are already working on developing the first drug able to increase telomerase function in sick human cells. We think in the worst case our molecules will be able to stop cell degeneration in these patients, and perhaps induce some degree of reversion in them. This means that, if diagnoses at early stages, we might be able to provide patients with a normal lifespan.

Antiaging Cosmetics

Telomerase low activity is at the heart of aging. One of the side applications of our molecules is that since they are able to increase lifespan, their cosmetic applications are endless. Since they are peptides, their small size allows them to penetrate deep in the skin, rejuvenating it at unforeseen levels. Also, because they are of human origin, there are no reaction against them, no allergic results at all neither. Our peptides, encapsulated in our nanodevices, are simply the best combination as antiaging treatment.

Fragile X

Fragile X syndrome is the most common form of inherited mental retardation in males and is also a significant cause of mental retardation in females. It affects about 1 in 3,000 males and 1 in 4,000 females. Nearly all cases of fragile X syndrome are caused by an alteration (mutation) in the FMR1 gene where a DNA segment, known as the CGG triplet repeat, is expanded. Normally, this DNA segment is repeated from 5 to about 40 times. In people with fragile X syndrome, however, the CGG segment is repeated more than 200 times. The abnormally expanded CGG segment inactivates (silences) the FMR1 gene, which prevents the gene from producing a protein called fragile X mental retardation protein. Loss of this protein leads to the signs and symptoms of fragile X syndrome. Both boys and girls can be affected, but because boys have only one X chromosome, a single fragile X is likely to affect them more severely.
Oxidative stress is a strong problem in these patients. Our drug X-Tocomir has already passed Clinical Phase III against a placebo control group. Treated patients show a very clear improvement in their cognitive, learning and behavioral capacities. We plan to bring this drug to patients by the end of 2015.

Genetic Diagnostics

Since any treatment of a genetic disease needs to be based on an accurate and early diagnostic, this is a very important area for us. We develop new tests to diagnose rare diseases by sequencing one or a few of the patient’s genes, and some kits able to diagnose without any sequencing, just detecting the presence/absence of some biomolecules. Since this technology is quite limited, because sequencing is slow and only very few genes can be sequenced in parallel, we are extremely interested in massive sequencing techniques. Moreover, our interest is in sequencing of any patient WHOLE GENOME in a fast and cheap way. Currently, sequencing a whole human genome costs a minimum of $ 50,000 and generating usable results may take several months. We have teamed with private and public institutions to generate sequencing technology able to generate results under $ 5,000 and in a week tops. Also, these techniques will allow us to sequence up to 100 genomes per week in our labs. This means that we could diagnose ANY genetic disease or predisposition to suffer one to any patient. The first commercial prototypes will be available by 2,015

Rare Cancer

There have been many studies demonstrating correlations between telomere shortening and proliferative failure of human cells. With each cell division, telomeres shorten by 50–200 bp, primarily because the lagging strand of DNA synthesis is unable to replicate the extreme 3′ end of the chromosome (known as the end replication problem). When telomeres become sufficiently short, cells enter an irreversible growth arrest called cellular senescence. In most instances cells become senescent before they can accumulate enough mutations to become cancerous, thus the growth arrest induced by short telomeres may be a potent anti-cancer mechanism. We are investigating ways to induce telomere shortening in rapidly dividing cells, such as cancer cells. Also, since some particular forms of cancers are triggered by DNA instability, which is triggered by shorting of telomeres, we are also studying the inverse approach in these cases: to increase telomerase activity so chromosomes become stable and these forms of cancer prevented.

Nanotechnology

Development of a new drug is of no use if it cannot reach the target cell in a precise and effective way. Nanotechnology has been a revolution in many fields, including biomedicine. We are developing new nanoparticles able to deliver our drugs to precise cells, differentiating sick cells from healthy ones by recognizing membrane markets. We can nanodeliver both DNA and protein in an efficient way. We use different nanopolymers, which allows us to control the time rate of release, ensuring a sustainable treatment in the future. Moreover, many of our nanovehicles can go through the brain barrier, so we might be able to treat some brain tumors in the next future, unreachable to physicians today. Finally, we can both encapsulate our molecules or attach them to the surface of our nanodevices, so we could target receptors and other cell membrane molecules and markers.

RESEARCH

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Human DNA

Human DNA is a very long, linear double helix molecule. It is so long that a cell needs to pack it up, condense it, in much bigger molecular structures called chromosomes, to be able to handle it and controll gene expression. Chromosomes have especial DNA structures protecting its ends from degradation, this structures are called TELOMERES.

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TELOMERES

Every time one cell divides, it duplicates its DNA and each descendant cell receives an original copy. Interestingly, the molecular machinery in charge of duplicating DNA finds difficult to duplicate the TELOMERES, so after a cell divides, each daughter cell has shorter telomeres. This means that as chromosomes are passed from generation to generation of cells in human tissues, TELOMERES are shorter and shorter. This is called THE MOLECULAR CLOCK, and it is a proven aging mechanism.

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GSE24-2

hough aging is a normal process, there are several diseases where it happens too fast and we are focused in generating new therapies against them. TELOMERES are maintained by a molecular complex called TELOMERASE, involving several human genes. TELOMERASE’s activity lowers as cells are older. We have found a molecule, GSE24-2, able to control TELOMERASE activity in old or sick human cells, actually resetting the MOLECULAR CLOCK. From GSE24-2 we are generating new variations, and also developing safe ways of introducing them into patient’s cells by nanotechnology.
In our portfolio, different molecules are being developed for the therapeutic and the cosmetics markets.

Our patented GSE24-2 peptides have already been demonstrated in vitro potential in several diseases, including cancer, Diskeratosis Congenita, Werner Syndrome, Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis, etc.

DISEASES

The telomeropathies are a newly described group of human diseases based on the genetics and molecular biology of telomeres, the ends of chromosomes. Along with the rare dyskeratosis congenita, the telomeropathies include some cases of the blood disorder aplastic anemia and, idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, etc. Chromosome instability is a result of critical shortening of telomeres.

Telomeropathies are rare diseases with incidence ranging between 1:100,000 and 1:1,000,000 people.

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Rare Cancer

Cancer is ultimately the result of cells that uncontrollably grow and do not die. Normal cells in the body follow an orderly path of growth, division, and death. Programmed cell death is called apoptosis, and when this process breaks down, cancer begins to form. Unlike regular cells, cancer cells do not experience programmatic death and instead continue to grow and divide.

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Werner Syndrome

Is a premature aging disease that begins in adolescence or early adulthood and results in the appearance of old age by 30-40 years of age. Its physical characteristics may include short stature (common from childhood on) and other features usually developing during adulthood: wrinkled skin, baldness, cataracts, muscular atrophy and a tendency to diabetes mellitus, among others

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Aplastic Anemia

Aplastic anemia (A-A) is a condition that occurs when bone marrow slowing or shutting down the production of new blood cells. The patient has pancytopenia (anemia, neutropenia and thrombocytopenia) resulting in decrease of all three blood cell types: red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets…

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Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis

Pulmonary fibrosis is a condition in which tissue deep in your lungs becomes thick and stiff, or scarred, over time. The development of the scarred tissue is called fibrosis. As the lung tissue becomes thicker, your lungs lose their ability to move oxygen into your bloodstream. As a result, your brain and other organs don’t get the oxygen they need. In some cases, doctors can find out what’s causing the fibrosis…

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Dyskeratosis Congenita

Dyskeratosis congenita (DC), also called Zinsser-Cole-Engman syndrome, is a rare progressive disease which results in what in some ways resembles premature aging (similar to progeria). The disease mainly affects the integumentary system, the organ system that protects the body from damage, with a major consequence being anomalies of the bone marrow…

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Ataxia-telangiectasia

Ataxia-telangiectasia (A-T) is a rare human autosomal recessive disease characterized by cerebellar degeneration, immunodeficiency, infertility, cancer predisposition, and sensitivity to ionizing radiation (IR) and agents that induce double strand breaks (DSBs) in DNA…

PIPELINE

Our interest is focused on DNA stability in stem cells maintaining different tissues. DNA becomes unstable, causing stem cell death, due to low DNA repair activity (mainly because of mutations in ATM), low telomerase activity leading to abnormally short telomeres (mainly caused by mutations in telomerase genes) and high sensitivity to oxidative stress due to low SOD and catalase function. Some of these aspects are more important than others in different pathologies but typically all of them concur.
We work with short synthetic peptides as active molecules, up to 11 amino acids. Typically we encapsulate them in PLGA, which ensures a very good distribution in all the body with no toxicity

Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF)

In our pipeline, we are very interested in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) and our peptide Neumomir has already demonstrated very clear and strong results in IPF animal models, recovering lung tissue and function, also increasing animal lifespan, weight, etc. This drug might work both in patients where the disease is already developed (reverting the symptoms) even if these are well advanced and also as preventive in patients prone to suffer from the disase. Neumomir might be indicated be indicated to all IPF patients and not only those with low telomerase activity. In addition to the animal model, we have also tested this drug in biopsies from many different patients, with extraordinary results.

Blood Diseases

Blood diseases like dyskeratosis congenita (DC) and aplastic anemias (AA) are caused in many cases by low telomerase activity. It is very interesting that many of these patients also develop lung fibrosis, which might be addressed by our drugs too. Gestelmir and Anemir have been already tested in biopsies from patients, reverting the symptoms, increasing cell lifespan, etc.

Ataxia Telangiectasia

Ataxia telangiectasia is caused by low capacity of human cells to repair DNA, needed daily to tackle aggressions breaks in the double helix caused by external aggression, including oxidative stress. We are developing a drug that will address the main problem these patients have: death of Purkinje cells in their brains. We are developing a strategy able to make our drug cross the Blood Brain Barrier (BBB), so the drug could be administered as I.V. once every 2 or 4 weeks. In addition, these patients suffer bone marrow problems and also lung fibrosis, that our drugs could address too.

Down Syndrome

Down Syndrome is a very complex pathology but today we know that oxidative stress is a main factor because it causes neuronal cell death in early stages of the baby development. We are working on a new drug able to protect the baby brain even at very early stages of development, so the mom could take the drug during pregnancy and protect the baby’s brain; the drug would also be taken after birth, for life

Muscle Dystrophies

Muscle dystrophies have similar biochemical and cellular pathways with fibrosis because it is fibrosis what mainly end up preventing the sick muscle to keep on functioning. In our antifibrotic program, we have peptide it potential preventing this problem to occur, currently under development in animal models that suffer these diseases too.

Parkinson

Other diseases like Parkinson’s are known to be clearly aggravated by oxidative stress, so we are developing short peptides able to increase cell defense in these cases

Rare and Aggressive Tumors

Muscle dystrophies have similar biochemical and cellular pathways with fibrosis because it is fibrosis what mainly end up preventing the sick muscle to keep on functioning. In our antifibrotic program, we have peptide it potential preventing this problem to occur, currently under development in animal models that suffer these diseases too.

Fragile X

Fragile X is a disease causing mental retardation and cognitive problems to children and adults, X-Tocomir has passed Clinical Phase III demonstrating a clear improvement in cognitive functions of patients taking the drug, versus those only treated with the placebo. Our company plans to bring worldwide this drug to patients by the end of 2015. Also, we are investigating this drug in other diseases like Down Syndrome.

PROJECTS FUNDED BY

CONTACT US

  • IIB – CSIC
  • C/ ARTURO DUPERIER 4.
  • 28.029 MADRID, SPAIN
  • +34 91 830 59 50