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Press Release

Transplantation Pioneer Dr. Leonard Bailey Co-Founds ADiTx Therapeutics, Inc. to Develop Immune Modulation Treatment for Extending the Life of Transplanted Organs

Posted on: 26 Jun 18

Novel ADi technology designed to therapeutically induce immune tolerance to transplanted tissues

LOMA LINDA, Calif., June 26, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Founders and management comprised of scientific experts and innovation commercialization entrepreneurs today announced the establishment of ADiTx Therapeutics, Inc. (“ADiTxT” or the “Company”), a biotechnology company developing a novel nucleic acid-based technology to selectively suppress immune cells involved in the rejection of transplanted tissues and organs. The Company’s proprietary Apoptotic DNA Immunotherapy (“ADi”) technology is designed to harness the body’s natural processes to therapeutically induce immune tolerance to transplanted tissues and organs.

Recognition of donated organs and tissues as foreign by the body’s immune system continues to pose a significant challenge to achieving successful long-term transplantation. In the U.S. alone, more than 30,000 patients receive organ transplants each year. Forty percent (40%) of these transplanted organs do not survive beyond five years and require re-transplantation.1 Suppression of the immune system using drugs like cyclosporine can help prevent acute (early) rejection, but have significant undesirable side effects, including increased risk of life-threatening infections and malignancies. As a result, a significant unmet need exists for therapies that can train the body’s immune system to “tolerate” or accept the transplanted organ, allowing reduced dependence on immunosuppressive drugs.

ADi is a nucleic acid-based therapeutic product candidate designed to be administered in the skin to cause in-body induction of apoptosis (programmed cell death), a naturally occurring process of cell turnover in the body that induces tolerance to one’s own tissues. ADi mimics this process, retraining the body’s immune system to recognize a transplanted organ as self-tissue. ADi technology, which was developed at Loma Linda University (“LLU”) and licensed by ADiTxT, can potentially be engineered to address a wide array of indications.

ADiTxT was co-founded by Leonard L. Bailey, MD, an internationally recognized authority on congenital heart surgery and infant heart transplantation. Dr. Bailey’s pioneering work in infant heart transplantation has enabled babies born with otherwise fatal heart deformities to be given a second chance at life and resulted in babies being added to the national organ transplant registry. He performed the first successful human-to-human heart transplantation in a newborn baby and has performed countless lifesaving procedures at Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital, where he served as Surgeon-in-Chief. Dr. Bailey retired from LLU in 2018 where he served as a distinguished professor of transplantation surgery and was part of the team that developed ADi.

“Our ADi approach is highly focused on addressing the unmet need in organ transplant rejection,” said Dr. Bailey, Chairman of the Board of ADiTxT. “We believe that this therapeutic candidate may not only address the unmet need in this highly unmet area of organ transplantation, but may also reduce additional hospitalization to those patients receiving transplantation procedures.”

The Company is initially focusing on skin allotransplantation, a setting in which ADi treatment has demonstrated significantly improved survival of transplanted skin grafts in animal models. The Company’s next milestone is filing for an Investigational New Drug (IND) application with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to begin clinical trials in late 2019.

In addition to Dr. Bailey who brings clinical expertise, the two other co-founders are:

Amro Albanna – Co-Founder & Chief Executive Officer

Mr. Albanna’s professional career has been focused on building and growing companies around innovations with impactful potential. He has founded and co-founded multiple technology startups in the areas of enterprise software, GPS & wireless, patent recognition, nanotechnology and entomology. He was one of the founding members of a private-public partnership to develop the first innovation and research park in Riverside, CA. Mr. Albanna was selected under a Department of Defense program to mentor a cohort of postgraduate scientists pursuing innovation commercialization projects. He has been invited to speak and lecture at various universities including USC, University of California, Riverside, Chapman University and TEDx at University of North Carolina. He received multiple awards including “Riverside’s First Innovation Honoree,” “Promoting Innovation Award,” “Entrepreneurial Excellence Award by Bourns College of Engineering” and “Distinguished Alumni of the Year.” He is the co-inventor of two patents related to GPS, wireless and medical sensors.

Shahrokh Shabahang – Co-Founder & Chief Technology Officer

Dr. Shabahang embarked on his R&D career at Loma Linda University (LLU), where he maintained an academic lab focused on microbiology and molecular genetics. As an Associate Professor at LLU, he worked with teams of investigators to study interaction of pathogenic microorganisms in preclinical models and to utilize the knowledge gained to develop novel therapeutic products. In 2005, Dr. Shabahang transitioned from academic research to industry to focus his work on clinical development of therapeutic products. Dr. Shabahang is a co-founder of three start-up biotech organizations and during the past 14 years, he has gained experience and expertise in designing clinical trials and working with regulatory agencies to obtain approval to initiate first-in-human clinical studies. During the past decade, Dr. Shabahang has worked to elucidate the mechanisms involved in ADi’s ability to program the immune system to become tolerant to tissues. His intimate knowledge of ADi and its components continue to serve ADiTxT’s mission to develop new approaches to address unmet needs in immune modulation. The combination of clinical experience and expertise in clinical immunology highlights the contributions of Dr. Shabahang as a co-founder of ADiTxT.

About ADiTx Therapeutics, Inc.

ADiTx Therapeutics, Inc. is a pre-clinical stage, life sciences Company with a mission to prolong life and enhance life quality of transplanted patients. ADiTxT’s current portfolio includes an exclusive worldwide license for commercializing Apoptotic DNA Immunotherapy (“ADi”), which utilizes a novel approach that mimics the way our bodies naturally induce tolerance to our own tissues. As of today, ADiTxT patent portfolio licensed from Loma Linda University includes six U.S. patents, three U.S. pending patent applications, 57 foreign patents, and 12 foreign pending patent applications directed to ADi and related technologies.

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Forward Looking Statements

This communication contains forward-looking statements concerning ADiTx Therapeutics, Inc. Forward-looking statements generally include statements that are predictive in nature and depend upon or refer to future events or conditions, and include words such as “may,” “will,” “should,” “would,” “expect,” “plan,” “believe,” “intend,” “look forward,” and other similar expressions among others. Statements that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are based on current beliefs and assumptions that are subject to risks and uncertainties and are not guarantees of future performance. Actual results could differ materially from those contained in any forward-looking statement. Except as required by applicable law, the Company undertakes no obligation to revise or update any forward-looking statement, or to make any other forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.


James Heins
ICR, Inc.

Stephanie Carrington
Managing Director
ICR, Inc.

1 Kaplan-Meier Graft Survival Rates for Transplants Performed: 2008-2015, Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network, Based on data as March 16, 2018. This work was supported in part by Health Resources and Services Administration contract 234-2005-37011C. The content is the responsibility of the authors alone and does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Department of Health and Human Services, nor does mention of trade names, commercial products, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.


Last updated on: 26/06/2018

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