Moonlight Therapeutics, Inc., a biotechnology company developing treatments for food allergies, announced the receipt of $1.9 million in funding for preclinical studies and product development that will enable preparations for a clinical trial for its lead program in peanut allergy. This funding was awarded through a Phase 2 Small Business grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), a division of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
Moonlight’s proprietary treatment platform, TASIS — Targeted Allergen-Specific Immunotherapy within the Skin — involves the application of a small, minimally invasive skin stamp to target the delivery of allergens to the skin’s immune cells to desensitize someone from a food allergy. The dermal stamp is designed for at home self-administration. It is applied for only a few minutes and then discarded. The approach has shown encouraging results in animal models of peanut and other allergies.
This additional funding will enable the company to complete its pre-clinical activities, and submit an Investigational New Drug Application (IND) for the peanut allergy treatment with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The company received its first private funding last year led by the Central Piedmont Investment Group (CPIG).
“We are excited to receive the latest funding so that we can move one step closer to bringing this treatment to the clinic,” said Samir Patel, Moonlight Therapeutics co-founder and CEO. “We will now focus on completing our pre-clinical research and begin to raise funding for our first clinical trial in peanut allergic individuals.”
“We’re proud of the progress the Moonlight Therapeutics team has made to develop a unique allergen immunotherapy platform that can address peanut and other food allergies,” said Bob Easter, Central Piedmont Investment Group’s managing director. “CPIG sees tremendous growth potential as there are over 30 million individuals with a food allergy just in the United States.”
“Allergists have very few treatment options for treating peanut and other food allergies,” explained Dr. Brian Vickery, who is the Director of the Food Allergy Center at Emory and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. “Moonlight Therapeutics is working on a treatment that has the potential to help address a significant unmet need and we’re eager to evaluate its potential in clinical trials.”
About Moonlight Therapeutics
Based in Atlanta, Ga., Moonlight Therapeutics is an early-stage biotechnology company developing targeted, allergen-specific immunotherapy treatments for food allergies. Food allergies are estimated to affect more than 30 million people in the United States. Moonlight uses its proprietary platform, TASIS, to target the delivery of allergens to immune cells in the skin. This technology was invented at Texas Tech University. TASIS can be used to deliver individual or combinations of allergens to treat multiple allergies. The company was founded in 2017 and is supported by the Georgia Research Alliance. To learn more, visit moonlighttx.com.
About Central Piedmont Investment Group
Central Piedmont Investment Group considers angel funding support for both start-ups and established ventures. The group is interested in a wide range of business types, and welcomes proposals from any industry. We are located in central Georgia and work with local partners to grow promising businesses throughout the Southeastern United States. Please see cpig.co or contact Bob Easter at 478.719.0700 for more information.