A really cool idea boosts the safety and efficacy of therapies on the move
Until recently, the transportation of sensitive pharmaceuticals along the supply chain from production to patient required relatively straightforward refrigeration technology. As therapies have gone from simple chemical molecules to protein macromolecules to living cells, the cold chain has had to adapt. Most biologics must be cryopreserved and, as anyone who has ever frozen and thawed a steak can appreciate, it is not an easy task to keep cells in tip-top shape during that process. Currently available technologies use organic solvents as cryoprotectants which are not perfect. The EU-funded ICE_PACK project is developing biomimetic polymeric cryoprotectants that will stabilise membranes and protect proteins from damage, significantly reducing the cost of therapeutics while enhancing their safety, efficacy and accessibility.
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