Research & Development Programs

  • Preclinical Proof of Concept
  • Other Potential Indications
  • Intellectual Property
  • Partnering/Investors

 

ZLife Technologies is developing a novel preservation solution, ZL Solution, as a clinical treatment for ischemia-reperfusion injury in organ transplantation, particularly intestinal transplantation. Preclinical proof of concept has been demonstrated, with excellent results for 24-hour preservation of mouse and human intestinal tissues. A provisional patent has been obtained, and ZLife Technologies is 10-12 months from filing an IDE to begin an initial clinical trial. The solution has the potential to be effective in preserving other tissues, e.g. kidney, for transplantation. The goal of ZLife Technologies is to further develop and commercialize this novel preservation solution as a clinical treatment for I/R injury in intestinal transplantation and other forms of organ transplantation. The potential market value is $200 million annually.

 

Preclinical Proof of Concept

ZLife Technologies has demonstrated an initial proof of concept for preservation of procured intestines from mice and humans, with superior results compared to the current standard UW Solution®. In addition to its better preservation properties, the estimated cost of the ZL Solution is significantly less than that of the standard UW solution.

Intestinal failure can result from intestinal resection, inflammation (Crohn’s disease), fistulization, mechanical or functional intestinal obstruction, or indirectly from the effects of sepsis on the gastrointestinal tract.1, 2 It is a devastating clinical condition with a 30% mortality rate in the first 4 years following diagnosis.2,3 Annual medical costs for each patient range from about $50,000 to more than $200,000. Although intestinal transplantation is the therapy of choice, early postoperative mortality rates can be as high as 30%. A critical issue is that after procurement, donor intestinal tissue is extremely sensitive to ischemia and thus to ischemia-reperfusion (I/R) injury when transplanted to the recipient. The current standard preservation solution used during tissue transportation is suboptimal for intestinal graft tissues, despite producing good results with other organs.34 Based on studies from the founder, Dr. Zhang’s, laboratory on the mechanism of intestinal ischemia-reperfusion injury,511 a novel intestinal tissue preservation solution was developed and used in in vitro preservation experiments. The resulting preservation solution (ZL Solution) was tested and showed significantly better effectiveness than the current standard UW Solution® in preserving tissue, and in particular in preventing I/R injury, in both mouse and human intestinal tissues.

References:

  1. 1. Ladefoged K, Hessov I, Jarnum S. Nutrition in short-bowel syndrome. Scandinavian journal of gastroenterology. Supplement. 1996;216:122-131
  2. Howard L, Ament M, Fleming CR, Shike M, Steiger E. Current use and clinical outcome of home parenteral and enteral nutrition therapies in the united states. Gastroenterology. 1995;109:355-365
  3. Roskott AM, Nieuwenhuijs VB, Dijkstra G, Koudstaal LG, Leuvenink HG, Ploeg RJ. Small bowel preservation for intestinal transplantation: A review. Transplant international : official journal of the European Society for Organ Transplantation. 2011;24:107-131
  4. Details of intestinal failure related disease diagnosis and treatment can be found in the following links:
    i) Intestinal Failure: http://www.medscape.org/viewarticle/548912
    ii) Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America
    iii) Intestinal Transplantation

 

Other Potential Indications

ZLife Technologies is evaluating a number of potential indications for ZL Solution for other forms of organ transplantation, including heart and kidney organ preservation.

 

Intellectual Property

ZLife Technologies has established a strong intellectual property position around ZL Solution, including a provisional US patent broadly covering ZL Solution’s composition and associated methods of blocking ischemia-reperfusion injury in organ transplantation.

 

Partnering/Investors

ZLife Technologies is actively seeking pharmaceutical partners, public funding and private investors for technical and financial assistance to develop ZL Solution for the clinic.