“Plectonic” was selected to take part in “EIT Health BioEntrepreneurshipLab Oxford-Munich 2019” and received Business Coaching in regard to “Design and Validation of Business Concept”; the team was able to validate its business idea together with the help of a mentor and the tremendous effort the team showed during the incubation programme. Shortly after completing the EntrepreneurshipLab the team wrote the m4Award grant application based on its designed business model, pitched successfully to a jury (which it learned in ELab) and won the m4Award.
Plectonic – Development of a nanoswitch for antibodies (LOGIBODY)
Antibody-based immunotherapies have great potential for the treatment of tumor diseases. However, an over-stimulation of the immune system can lead to side effects that require the therapy to be discontinued. This overstimulation has two causes: First, the target antigens are often present both on the tumor tissue and on the healthy tissue. Secondly, the antibodies are active throughout the body and not only locally on the tumor. In order to solve these problems, the team and its mentor Prof. Dietz have developed an “on/off button” for antibody immunotherapies. This is an ultra-miniaturised nanoswitch made of DNA. The nanoswitch can specifically recognize tumor cells and recruit the body’s own immune cells to fight these cells. This enables the immune system to fight tumor cells in a targeted and “on demand” manner and leads to lower activity on healthy tissue and thus to fewer side effects. In the medium term, the LOGIBODY platform will be used in cooperation with pharmaceutical companies to develop therapeutics against various tumor diseases. If the technology is successfully validated, LOGIBODY’s own therapies are planned in the long term. LOGIBODY is an example of the innovative potential of molecular robotics.