Pharmaceutical company Sonoran Biosciences has recently been awarded a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase II grant to further develop SB Gel, an injectable antibiotic gel, into a formulation to help treat prosthetic joint infections.

The grant, which totals $1,484,417, was awarded to the Scottsdale, Ariz-based company by the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases of the National Institutes of Health.

SB Gel is described in a media release as an injectable liquid at room temperature that thickens at body temperature, where it conforms to an implant or surgical site surface, slowly releases its drug payload and then dissolves after the drug is released. It is based on technology developed at Arizona State University.

The grant will be used to fund further research required to proceed to clinical trials for a particular formulation of the gel that would release antibiotics to treat prosthetic joint infections.

It is hoped that using the SB Gel will enable treatment of the infection in a single surgery to remove the biofilm on the implant and tissue surfaces, and place a new permanent implant, without the need for a spacer. The typical regimen is to use two surgeries–the first to remove the implant and the infected surroundings and to dose them with an antibiotic-loaded bone cement “spacer,” and the second to replace the spacer with a new permanent implant, per the release.

“After about 50 years of academic research and thousands of publications, SB Gel has a chance to be the first material in this family of temperature-responsive polymers used to deliver medications in people,” says Derek Overstreet, co-founder and chief scientific officer of Sonoran Biosciences, in the release. “This generous grant gives us the funding we need to optimize the formulation and commence the safety studies needed to advance our antibiotic product to the clinic.”

[Source(s): Sonoran Biosciences, PRWeb]