The Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has awarded Biodel, a Danbury, Conn.-based specialty biopharmaceutical company, a grant for the development of concentrated ultra-rapid-acting insulin formulations for use in an artificial pancreas, also known as a closed loop pump system.
The two-year grant, totaling $582,473, is intended to fund research to develop Biodel's proprietary ultra-rapid-acting insulin product candidate at high concentrations suited to provide sufficient quantities of insulin in an external artificial pancreas pump device that has a limited volume capacity. Currently, regular insulin at concentrations of 500 units/mL is used to treat extremely insulin resistant patients with diabetes. While these formulations are five times more concentrated than typical insulin presentations, they have a prolonged duration of action that may be undesirable for use with an artificial pancreas. Concentrated formulations of Biodel's ultra-rapid-acting insulin may be absorbed more rapidly than existing concentrated insulin formulations and may therefore become an important component of an effective step in the development of an artificial pancreas.
"We are gratified to receive this award recognizing our innovations in the development of novel therapies to treat diabetes," said Dr. Errol De Souza, president and CEO of Biodel. "These funds will be focused on applying our proprietary technology for the development of ultra-rapid-acting insulin formulations for the treatment of insulin resistant patients and to assist in the development of effective artificial pancreas therapy."
This research is supported by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases of the National Institutes of Health under award number R43DK096604.