EAGAN, Minn., Sept. 15, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Makana
Therapeutics today received a $650,000 KidneyX Artificial Kidney Prize for
their work to increase the supply of kidney donor organs through
pig-to-human xenotransplants. Xenotransplantation is the process of
transplanting organs or tissues between members of different
species into humans, thus addressing the crisis of organ shortage
we are facing today.
"We see a future where xenotransplantation will allow end-stage
renal disease patients who need a kidney transplant to have one
immediately, without the years of waiting and uncertainty they
currently face," said Matt Tector,
chief scientific officer of Makana Therapeutics.
Every year more than 100,000 new patients are deemed to need
some form of renal replacement, yet fewer than 25,000 kidney
transplants are performed annually due to a shortage of suitable
To meet this increasing demand, Makana has developed a "triple
knockout" pig with kidneys viable for human transplant by
inactivating three separate genes to reduce expression of pig
molecules on the transplanted kidney that are targeted by human
antibodies. By eliminating these three genes from pigs, it is
possible to reduce, and in some cases, eliminate human antibody
binding to the pig cells which typically lead to organ rejection or
other complications. Makana estimates the "triple knockout"
pig will be a suitable kidney donor for as many as 70 percent of
kidney failure patients.
Makana, a subsidiary of Minneapolis-based life-sciences company
Recombinetics, is strategically placed to bring this innovation to
market leveraging both Makana's strong intellectual property and
pre-clinical success as well as Recombinetics leadership in large
animal genetic engineering and animal husbandry expertise.
"We believe there are no remaining scientific unknowns for us to
get to our clinical trial. Our remaining efforts will be
geared towards gaining FDA approval for the trial and continuing to
improve our technology so we can meet our goal of providing a
transplant to every patient in need," said Dr. Joe Tector, founder of Makana.
As a pre-clinical stage company, Makana expects its
first-in-human trial to commence as early as 2022 and could be to
market as soon as 2025.
About The Artificial Kidney Prize
The Kidney Innovation Accelerator (KidneyX), a public-private
partnership between the U.S. Department of Health and Human
Services (HHS) and the American Society of Nephrology (ASN), is
accelerating innovation in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment
of kidney diseases.
The Artificial Kidney Prize is a competition to accelerate the
development of continuous kidney replacement therapies that provide
transformational treatment options beyond current dialysis methods.
For this competition, artificial kidneys may be wearable,
implantable, bioengineered, developed as a xenotransplant or
chimera organ, or other approaches not yet conceived.
About Makana Therapeutics
Founded in 2009, Makana Therapeutics is focused on developing
swine with reduced xenoantigen expression, making human
transplantation of cells, tissues and organs from these animals
possible. Makana's focus on simplified genetics, optimized pig
cloning techniques and careful patient selection is expected to
streamline product development and result in safer more efficacious
Founded in 2008, Recombinetics Inc. is a recognized global
leader in the development, deployment, and commercialization of
genetically engineered animals. Its three subsidiaries, Regenevida,
Surrogen, and Acceligen, have delivered hundreds of animals to:
enable drug, device, and therapeutic discovery; generate
transplantable cells, tissues, and organs; and provide improved
health, well-being, and productivity in agricultural animals.
Contact: Nikki Rockstroh, firstname.lastname@example.org
SOURCE Recombinetics Inc