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Liposome-based Biomimetic Treatment for auto-immune diabetes (T1D)

Project description

Innovative treatment for autoimmune diabetes

Autoimmune diseases (AD) affect up to 10 % of the world’s population and require chronic palliative treatments. This leads to higher costs and lower quality of life. This issue is worsening, with occurrences of type 1 diabetes (T1D) rising worldwide, treatments for which cannot achieve sustained glycaemic level control, finally leading to acute and long-term side effects. Ahead Therapeutics utilises an encapsulation technology to develop innovative treatments for AD. Specifically, it uses liposomes containing auto-autoantigens, which through a biomimetic process can induce immune tolerance that could help in treating T1D. The objective of the EU funded LIPOBITS project is to put into market this novel solution that is long lasting, lacks secondary effects or toxicity, and has a cost efficient production process.


Autoimmune diseases (AD) affect 5-10% of the global population and require chronic palliative treatments, resulting in lower quality of life and great costs for society. Moreover, a steady rise in the incidence of some AD such as Type 1 diabetes (T1D) has been detected worldwide. Main treatments for T1D are currently based on the continuous administration of exogenous insulin, but none of the 20 existing marketed insulins can achieve a sustained glycaemic level control. Thus, they cannot fully prevent T1D’s long term and acute side effects.

Ahead Therapeutics is a start-up company exploiting a proprietary encapsulation technology to develop treatments for different AD. It has developed an innovative solution for T1D based on the use of liposomes containing auto-autoantigens. Through a biomimetic process, these liposomes can induce antigen specific immune tolerance, stopping the autoimmune reaction and allowing insulin-producing β-cells to recover. Despite its potential for preventive use, Ahead’s treatment is mainly foreseen as a therapeutic reverse vaccine on the onset of T1D, leading to a permanent cure of the disease.

Ahead solution has several competitive advantages derived from its biomimetic/physiologic mechanism of action: long-lasting/permanent effect, non-systemic immunosuppressive, no secondary effects/toxicity, low-cost production, complementary with other therapies.
The liposome-based platform has already been validated in animal models and preclinical non-regulatory assays are being completed. Current feasibility study will be now focus on defining a Regulatory Roadmap & IPR strategy, enlarging key partners network, discover new potential licensees, scaling up liposomes production and analyse deeper market & competitors.

LIPOBITS is a solid high-potential innovation project expected to support Ahead’s global dimension and to generate 7 high qualified jobs total incomes of 10,5 M€ by 2022, and < 300 M € considering the whole life cycle of the asset.

Call for proposal


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Net EU contribution
€ 50 000,00
Edifici eureka parc recerca uab campus uab s/n
08193 Cerdanyola del valles

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The organization defined itself as SME (small and medium-sized enterprise) at the time the Grant Agreement was signed.

Este Cataluña Barcelona
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Other funding
€ 21 429,00