NanoMedical Systems (NMS), an Austin, Texas based biotechnology firm received a $3mm grant from the US Department of Defense to advance the development of an implantable buprenorphine device. According to an NMS press release:
“NanoMedical Systems develops novel drug-delivery devices based on its proprietary nStrada™ nanofluidics platform for sustained release (up to 6 months) of chronic therapies. These devices can be loaded with a variety of drugs including small molecules, peptides, and proteins for subcutaneous implantation. The nStrada™ devices rely on diffusion (passive or controlled) to achieve steady-state drug concentrations within a few days and then maintain constant release for the duration of the implant. This performance represents a significant improvement over polymer-based implants and depots which suffer from an initial burst release and multiple weeks to achieve steady-state concentrations. The nStrada™ platform is being used to develop a product for the sustained delivery of buprenorphine over many months with a constant release profile and no burst effect that can achieve the necessary drug concentration to be effective.”
Indivior's Sublocade is a long-acting (28 days) buprenorphine injection. Unlike Sublocade, the NMS device is expected to be implanted in patients and released for up six months. Such a product could solve some of the problems of other implantable products by releasing a constant flow of medication.
The NMS device is years away, even if it is successful with its clinical trials, but it is exciting to see companies investing in novel treatment methods for opioid use disorder.