MPP Platform

MPP Platform

Mucus is an innate barrier for drug delivery

All entry points into a human body, including the eyes, nose, lungs, gastrointestinal tract, and genitourinary tract, are protected from extraneous particles (allergens, pathogens, toxins) by a layer of mucus. This innate defensive mechanism also presents a barrier for drug delivery to mucosal tissues and underlying organs. Just like unwanted debris, traditional drug delivery vehicles such as micro- and nanoparticles are effectively trapped by the sticky mucus constituents and rapidly eliminated by various mucus clearance mechanisms, thereby limiting their efficiency as drug carriers.

MPP drug carriers are engineered to penetrate mucus layers

Kala’s MPPs are engineered to penetrate and uniformly coat the mucus barrier, thereby reducing the extent of mucociliary clearance and facilitating topical drug delivery to mucosal tissues and underlying organs. Click to view full diagram.
Kala’s MPPs are engineered to penetrate and uniformly coat the mucus barrier, thereby reducing the extent of mucociliary clearance and facilitating topical drug delivery to mucosal tissues and underlying organs. Click to view full diagram.

Inspired by the behavior of viral particles that can break through mucosal barriers, Kala’s proprietary Mucus-Penetrating Particle (MPP) technology is a versatile formulation platform that produces therapeutic nanoparticles specifically engineered to avoid the entrapment and clearance by mucus. We believe the ability of MPP to rapidly and uniformly penetrate mucus layers has the potential to translate into superior pharmacokinetics and efficacy in multiple organs using multiple animal models, including topical delivery to the eye in rabbits and mini-pigs, pulmonary delivery in mice and guinea pigs, and cervicovaginal tract delivery in mice. View all publications.

Real-time movies of conventional nanoparticles and Kala MPPs, both 200 nm in diameter, in fresh ex vivo human cervicovaginal mucus: While conventional particles are highly immobilized, MPPs avoid adhesion and rapidly penetrate mucus. (Trajectories tracing particles’ movement added for visualization purposes).

Technology may be engineered to apply to a wide range of molecules

We believe the MPP technology has the potential to be engineered to apply to multiple drug classes. To date, MPP formulation feasibility has been demonstrated with drugs from multiple therapeutic classes, including:

  • Antibiotics (prodrugs)
  • Antifungals
  • Antivirals
  • Carbonic anhydrase inhibitors
  • Kinase inhibitors
  • Loop diuretics
  • NSAIDs
  • Nucleic acids
  • Steroids
  • Proprietary NCEs

Ability to achieve manufacturing scale

Kala’s MPP technology does not require covalent modifications, but instead utilizes excipients generally recognized as safe (GRAS), and is amenable to formulation of highly drug-loaded nanoparticles of insoluble compounds. In addition, Kala’s MPP formulations designed for ophthalmic applications are comprised entirely of excipients previously used in other FDA-approved ophthalmic products. The final product can be a sterile, shelf-stable nanosuspension supplied in a ready-to-use dosage form. Utilizing third-party manufacturers, we have successfully scaled manufacturing of drug product supplies under cGMP to near-commercial scale.

Novel drug delivery technology

Kala holds worldwide rights to its MPP technology. The significance and impact of MPPs has been highlighted in distinguished journals like Journal of American Medical Association, Nature Materials, Nature Nanotechnology, Science Translational Medicine, and more. For a comprehensive list of our publications, please visit our Publications page.