Alteogen, a Korean developer of bio-beta, said Wednesday that it has become the world's second developer of recombinant human hyaluronidase protein and has also finished registering a patent related to its procedure in Korea.
The substance can replace intravenous antibodies and protein drugs with subcutaneous injectable drugs.
The patented technology is a new method that uses protein engineering, which increases the stability of proteins by enhancing thermal stability while maintaining the inherent mechanism of enzymatic activity of human hyaluronidase.
In the case of conventional antibody therapeutic drugs or protein drugs, the treatment is useful only when received in large doses. Therefore, it uses an intravenous injection method, which requires patients to stay at the hospital for at least four to five hours. Such a lengthy procedure is both cumbersome and expensive.
To overcome such problem, Halozyme Therapeutic had developed the world’s first recombinant human hyaluronidase protein that changed the intravenous antibody drug administration to subcutaneous injections. Halozyme receives 350 billion won ($310 million) annually as royalty and milestone from various multinational companies.
With the newly developed technology, Alteogen is developing a Herceptin biosimilar subcutaneous injection and will gradually advance its patents to countries and apply it to other intravenous antibodies and biopharmaceuticals.
Also, the company plans to challenge the anticancer drugs market as it overcame the short half-life of hyaluronidase by developing a NexPTM fusion protein using its technology. The new fusion protein has also solved the problem of anti-cancer drugs accessing the cancer cell surface due to over-expressed hyaluronic acid.
“The company expects that subcutaneous injection of protein therapeutics will dominate the future, as companies such as Roche has already reached 50 percent of the entire Herceptin market in just a few years after releasing subcutaneous injection version of Herceptin,” said Chung Kyung-hoon, director of the research center at Alteogen.
As Alteogen has developed the world’s second recombinant human hyaluronidase protein, the company expects that it will be able to generate significant sales by broadening the scope of its use, Chung added.