Altamira updates RNA therapeutics program with new CDO, NIH grant

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Altamira Therapeutics (NASDAQ:CYTO), in a business update on its development activities in RNA therapeutics, appointed Covadonga Pañeda, Ph.D., as chief development officer for RNA therapeutics, effective in early April 2022.

In addition, the company received an NIH grant to help advance an siRNA delivery platform for use in extrahepatic inflammatory disorders.

Dr. Pañeda will oversee and advance further development of Altamira’s delivery platforms for extrahepatic nucleotide delivery. She brings a wealth of experience to Altamira, acquired since 2008 through various roles with pharmaceutical companies, contract research organizations and in the venture capital sector in Europe. 

Most recently, she served as director of development at Limm Therapeutics, a neuroimmune biopharmaceutical company. Previously, she spent seven years as R&D manager at Sylentis S.A., a clinical stage RNAi biopharmaceuticals company. She also spent several years at Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, Calif.

In a statement, Thomas Meyer, founder, chairman and CEO of Altamira, said that together with the company’s CSO, Dr. Samuel Wickline, and a growing development team, Dr. Pañeda will be “instrumental in driving further progress of our OligoPhore and SemaPhore platforms for extrahepatic delivery of siRNA, mRNA or other nucleotides.”

In addition, the company’s U.S. subsidiary, Altamira Therapeutics Inc., recently was awarded a Small Business Technology Transfer grant by the NIH to help address the lack of effective systemic delivery technologies for RNA structures that might target diseases occurring beyond the liver. 

The project, titled “A Peptide-Based Polyplex Platform for Nucleotides Delivery to the Sites of Inflammation,” will help move Altamira’s OligoPhore delivery platform towards clinical-stage evaluations in inflammatory disorders by demonstrating safety and effectiveness in a mouse model of rheumatoid arthritis and optimizing a commercially scalable formulation process. The project will be carried out with an academic research partner.