Federal grant to aid in development of extended-release pegaptanib

December 14, 2010

Eyetech Inc. plans to use a $245,000 federal grant in its efforts to develop an extended-release formulation of pegaptanib sodium injection (Macugen) using microparticles technology.

Palm Beach Gardens, FL-Eyetech Inc. plans to use a $245,000 federal grant in its efforts to develop an extended-release formulation of pegaptanib sodium injection (Macugen) using microparticles technology.

The company is collaborating with SurModics Pharmaceuticals Inc. to develop the extended-release version of the pegylated anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) aptamer under a licensing and development agreement that was signed in 2005. The selective inhibitor of VEGF-165 is approved for the treatment of neovascular age-related macular degeneration (AMD). The goal of the extended-release formulation is to decrease the frequency of dosing from every 6 weeks to every 4 to 6 months.

The grant money came via the Qualifying Therapeutic Discovery Project (QTDP) program. Congress created the program under Section 48D of the Internal Revenue Code, enacted as part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010. It established criteria by which companies with 250 or fewer employees could apply to be certified for either a tax credit or grant up to specified limits for tax years 2009 and 2010.

The QTDP program awarded grants for projects deemed to have reasonable potential to:

  • Result in new therapies to treat areas of unmet medical need.

  • Prevent, detect, or treat chronic or acute diseases and conditions.

  • Reduce the long-term growth of health care costs in the United States.

  • Create and sustain high-quality jobs.

  • Advance U.S. competitiveness in the fields of life sciences, biological, and medical sciences.