small molecules, peptides, antibodies, large molecules
Cilcare offers a comprehensive solution for drug candidate development. We specialize in robust evaluation, supporting candidates from initial screening through IND-enabling studies. Our expertise and resources ensure your compounds are rigorously assessed and optimized for future clinical trials.
gene & cell therapies
About 60% of sensorineural hearing loss can be attributed to genetic factors. So far, we know that over 400 genes are linked to some form of hearing loss. Cell and gene therapy programs are addressing the need for cell specificity for the treatment of both genetic and acquired hearing loss.
One approach uses a traditional cell-based method of directly replacing the missing cells in situ. This can be achieved through direct injection of differentiated stem cells into the cochlea; these cells could become either HCs or SGNs according to their injection site.
Building on an increased understanding of molecular and cell-based pathways to induce the activation of endogenous precursor cells in the area of treatment, a second approach seeks to replace the same cellular machinery through the regeneration of damaged or missing cells. In this regenerative medicine approach, the goal is the activation of endogenous “stem-like cells” through a gene therapy, or small molecules and biologics in order to repopulate the missing cells.
Cilcare is committed to driving innovation in the field of regenerative medicine, addressing specific technical challenges related to one of the most inaccessible areas for therapeutic intervention.
Specific expertise for gene & cell therapies Research & Development:
- Cell culture
- Cochlear explants for vector transduction and gene therapy efficacy assessment
- In vivo cell engraftment and biodistribution studies
- Microsurgery & specialized administration and dosing routes
- In vivo pharmacology models
- Non-GLP & GLP pharmacology / toxicology / ototoxicity studies
- Functional auditory assessment (ABR, DPOAE, Wave I analysis)
- Histopathology (Cochleogram, Ribbon synapses and SGN counts)
- Method development, validation, and sample analysis
The safety of gene or cell therapy programs is assessed in the CILcare / CBSET Laboratories, in a regulated GLP (Good Laboratory Practice) environment.
drug delivery devices, cochlear implants, drug-eluting electrodes
As an alternative to systemic administration, several local delivery approaches to restore hearing are gaining more and more interest in the field. Reaching the cochlea remains the biggest challenge faced by clinicians treating inner ear diseases: this tiny organ is particularly difficult to access, encased in a dense layer of bone and protected by the blood-cochlear barrier.
Intracochlear drug delivery systems: a promising approach to treat hearing loss
While a transtympanic injection is the most frequently used local delivery method in the clinic, it can provide variable levels of drug exposure for a limited time in the cochlea. Therefore, many drug delivery devices are under development to deliver therapeutics directly into the inner ear and offer the benefit of dosing drugs precisely for extended periods: infusion pumps, cochlear implants, microneedle-based penetration of the RWM, magnetic nanoparticles, etc.
Learn more about cochlear implants and drug-eluted electrodes.