Lyndra Therapeutics (Watertown, Mass.) announced that it is developing an ultra-long-acting oral treatment for opioid use disorder.
On average, about 130 Americans die every day from an opioid overdose, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Lyndra Therapeutics received a grant from the National Institutes of Health to help find new treatment strategies and formulations of existing medications to address the opioid epidemic.
The grant covers the development of a once-a-week oral dosage of buprenorphine, which is a medication-assisted treatment that has shown to have improved outcomes for patients with opioid use disorder.
“The opioid epidemic has taken a heavy toll in the United States, with more than 130 people dying after overdosing every day. We agree with NIDA that there is a critical need for innovative, science-based solutions to treat opioid use disorder and addiction,” Andrew Bellinger, co-founder and chief scientific officer of Lyndra Therapeutics, said in a press release. “We have established that our once-weekly dosage form can deliver controlled, steady medication. There is a clear indication of our platform in the treatment of opioid use disorder to provide a more accessible, effective treatment option for patients.”
Lyndra Therapeutics recently raised $55 million in a Series B round to help develop an oral drug delivery system. The drug delivery capsule is designed to give a sustained release of one or more drugs for a week. It opens once it reaches the stomach and leaves the body through the gastrointestinal tract.
“To remedy the national opioid crisis, the NIH is strategically investing in companies that can put solutions in the hands of clinicians as soon as possible. With its ultra-long-acting oral delivery system already in clinical trials, Lynda is on a timetable that can help the NIH advance treatment options faster. I’m pleased to see Lyndra receive this grant,” Charles O’Keeffe, former president and CEO of Reckitt Benckiser Pharmaceuticals, the company that developed Suboxone, said.
The NIH grant is also part of the Focused Opioid Use Disorder Medications Development Research Project through the HEAL initiative.