Oligonucleotides: The Next Therapeutic Wave on the Market? (AAPS PharmSci 360)

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Matthew Lauber, senior director—Cell and Gene Therapy, Consumables & Lab Automation, at Waters Corporation, considers that status of oligonucleotides on the market.


Speaking in an exclusive interview with BioPharm International®, Matthew Lauber, senior director—Cell and Gene Therapy, Consumables & Lab Automation, Waters Corporation, had this to say when asked his thoughts on whether oligonucleotides (oligos) may be the next wave of biotherapeutics on the market in the near future: “The market for synthetic oligonucleotides is happening right now,” as he pointed out that oligos historically got their start in the late 1990s.

“What's interesting,” he notes, “is that the delivery mechanisms have been improving as of late.” Lauber points to some of the earliest oligo drugs using lipid nanoparticles as a delivery mechanism, sharing that “the basis of that technology is what [also] gave the formulation for the [messenger RNA] vaccines.”

However, he adds, today, the synthetic oligo market has moved on and is not using these nanoparticles anymore, which he characterizes as an amazing technology in and of themselves. Rather, he explains, whatever is needed for drug delivery is being put directly onto the synthetic oligo, so that, as in the case of a lipid modification, a direct conjugate is added directly onto the oligo molecule that helps the drug be internalized.

“All of this [new technology] has given [the] basis for this resurgence, and there are hundreds of new synthetic oligos in the market right now. It's an interesting subsegment to the overall wave coming up nucleic acid-based medicine,” Lauber states.

AAPS PharmSci 360 ran Oct. 22–25 in Orlando, Fl.

View Lauber’s video interviews about oligonucleotide development challenges, the need for new bioanalysis technology, and the industry’s focus on oligonucleotide therapeutics.