RXi Pharmaceuticals Corporation, a biopharmaceutical company pursuing proprietary therapeutics based on RNA interference (RNAi), today announced that it has acquired an exclusive license to novel technologies from Advirna LLC that enables in vivo delivery of RNAi therapeutics. The terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

The RNAi delivery technologies encompass four distinct approaches, primarily focusing on “self-delivery,” i.e., RNAi delivery without the use of a separate transport vehicle. Upon evaluating the Advirna technology, RXi observed that it delivers RNAi molecules to cells spontaneously upon direct administration, both in vitro and in vivo, without requiring a delivery vehicle or transfection formulation. RXi has reproduced this result in many cells, even in those that are difficult to transfect.

The delivery technology licensed from Advirna has been integrated into RXi’s rxRNA platform. This acquisition creates many potential advantages for the future development of this technology. This includes: spontaneous cellular uptake, or, delivery of RNAi therapeutics without the added expense of liposomes, complexes, nanoparticles or other delivery vehicles; patient-friendly administration routes: treating patients without the need of medical professional supervision; bio-distribution to targeted tissues; and reduced side effects (which can be associated with added delivery vehicles).

RXi is integrating its comprehensive delivery platform with its proprietary rxRNA compounds to develop a sustainable pipeline of products for unmet medical needs. With its strong IP position, RXi is using its scientific expertise in these areas to identify lead therapeutic candidates for inflammatory diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, and Crohn’s disease.

Tod Woolf, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of RXi, stated, “The ability to create self-delivering RNAi therapeutics promises to provide significant competitive advantages in efficacy, toxicity, ease of administration and manufacturing costs. This unique capability is creating a great deal of interest in the scientific and business community and we believe this exciting technology could simplify clinical development of RNAi therapeutics and could position RXi to take the lead in the area of RNAi therapeutics.”