Aphios Corporation Granted US Patent for Virus Inactivation Drug Safety Technique
May 18, 1999
Woburn, MA — Aphios Corporation has been granted United States Patent No. 5,877,005 on March 02, 1999. The patent is titled "Viral Inactivation Method Using Near-Critical, Supercritical or Critical Fluids" and is available for licensing.

Aphios' virus inactivation method is based on advanced liquid-liquid technology using supercritical, critical or near-critical fluids with or without cosolvents (SuperFluids™) for the gentle and rapid inactivation of both non-enveloped and enveloped viruses. SuperFluids™ are normally gases which, when compressed, exhibit enhanced solvation, penetration and expansion properties. SuperFluids™ are used to permeate and inflate the virus particles. The overfilled particles are then decompressed and, as a result of rapid phase conversion and expansion, rupture at their weakest points.

Inactivation of pathogenic viruses is a major healthcare concern. Viruses of concern include the enveloped HIV, the non-enveloped hepatitis A virus and unknowns which are being created from evolutionary mutations in hospital rooms or which may have jumped species from animal hosts into human beings as a result of rainforest disruptions. Pathogenic viruses increase the risk of chronic and fatal infections in patients whose very well-being are often dependent on the intravenous biologic and biotechnology products being administered.

Unlike currently available virus inactivation techniques which utilize organic solvents, heat and/or chemicals, Aphios' SuperFluids™ CFI (critical fluid inactivation) process is purely physical and generally applicable to different classes of viruses. The CFI process can reduce the viral load of most enveloped and non-enveloped viruses by more than 6 logs (99.9999 %) in times less than 20 seconds. Interestingly, the process is very gentle to therapeutic proteins and enzymes which retain structural and biological integrity. Products are left without traces of denaturing solvents or mutagenic chemicals being utilized in current virus inactivation technologies. CFI is amenable to batch or continuous-flow operations, is readily scalable and enjoys economies of scale.

Aphios' SuperFluids™ CFI process can be applied to human plasma used for blood transfusions, human plasma products such as immunoglobulins and fibrin glue, animal sera used in the biotechnology industry, recombinant therapeutics and transgenics where a virus inactivation step is essential and necessary for the manufacture of safe products. The Company is utilizing CFI to develop virus-free fibrin glue and immunoglobulin products, and therapeutic/preventative vaccines for HIV.

Research leading to the development of this technology was partially funded by Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) grants from the National Science Foundation and a prestigious $2 million Advance Technology Program (ATP) grant from the National Institute of Science and Technology, Department of Commerce.

Aphios Corporation is a privately held research and development company developing research tools and industrial processes for the improved discovery, manufacturing, delivery and safety of naturally derived and genetically engineered therapeutics for the treatment of cancer, AIDS, and other infectious diseases in a cost-effective manner. The Company is profiled in a recent interview on WallStreetInterview.com.