OneVax, LLC is a pre-clinical biotechnology company located in Alachua, Florida developed to harness the intellectual and research advances of University of Florida faculty for applications in the advancement of human health, and specifically, type 1 diabetes. Members of the UF Diabetes Institute and the Department of Biomedical Engineering constitute the core membership and provide the scientific direction of the company. The initial business interests of the company involve the development of novel vaccine formulations that incorporate biomaterials and polymers for applications including multicomponent and time-release drug delivery. The core goal of OneVax is to harness our knowledge of the immune system and biomaterials to create a tolerogenic vaccine to prevent and/or reverse type 1 diabetes.
Our lead technology consists of non-phagocytosable MPs designed to ensure the sustained release of select tolerogenic agents to create a tolerogenic microenvironment at the site of a subcutaneous injection. Phagocytosable MPs containing auto-antigen and tolerogenic factors are co-injected, resulting in uptake and subsequent tolerogenic presentation of auto-antigens by antigen presenting cells. This technology has shown to prevent diabetic onset in 60% of animals in the NOD mouse model of T1D, and has successfully completed the first stage of the FDA mandated two-species pre-clinical safety studies.
Our second technology consists of phagocytosable MPs containing auto-antigen embedded in a self-assembling hydrogel matrix loaded with tolerogenic agents, allowing for uptake and subsequent tolerogenic presentation of auto-antigens by antigen presenting cells Subcutaneous administration of this technology prevents diabetic onset in an impressive 80% of animals in the NOD mouse model of T1D. A recently awarded Phase 1 SBIR grant from the NIH is allowing us to evaluate the pre-clinical safety of this exciting technology.
Our final technology covalently links nanoparticles loaded with auto-antigen and tolerance inducing factors to regulatory T Cells (Tregs). Re-introduction of modified Tregs results in the induction of a tolerogenic microenvironment, allowing for antigen presenting cells to present the auto-antigen in a tolerogenic manner. This promising technology is still in the development stage and efficacy is currently being evaluated thanks to a recently awarded Phase 1 SBIR grant and an Exploratory/Developmental Research grant (R21) from the NIH.
Formation of OneVax, LLC.
1st SBIR phase I grant awarded: R43 DK100132, NIDDK, “Polymeric Biomaterial-based microparticle vaccine for the amelioration of Type 1 Diabetes”
2nd SBIR phase I grant awarded: R43 DK103402-01A1, NIDDK, “A novel biomaterial-based therapy to prevent type 1 diabetes”
3rd SBIR phase 1 grant awarded: R43 AI29034-01, NIAID, "A novel biomaterial-based therapy utilizing auto-antigen and adjuvant for the amelioration of Type 1 Diabetes"
Approval of funding for the partnered project entitled “Investigating a novel biomaterial-based therapy utilizing auto-antigen and adjuvant for the amelioration of Type I Diabetes” by The Florida High Tech Corridor Councils Matching Grants Program based at the University of Florida.
4th SBIR phase 1 awarded: R43 AI131850-01, NIAID, “Biomaterial-based delivery of Interleukin-2 to Regulatory T Cells for the amelioration of Type 1 Diabetes”
1st R21 grant awarded: R21 AI133067-01, NIAID, "Delivery of biomaterial-conjugated regulatory T cells for the amelioration of Type 1 Diabetes"
1st STTR Phase 1 grant awarded: 1R41AI134213-01, NIAID, "Therapeutic Administration of Suppressor of Cytokine Signaling Mimetics to Ameliorate Type 1 Diabetes"
Dr. Atkinson is currently an Eminent Scholar for Diabetes Research at The University of Florida. As part of this effort, Dr. Atkinson serves as Director for The Diabetes Institute at this institution. The author of over 375 publications, Dr. Atkinson has 30 years of investigation into the field of T1D. Dr. Atkinson has previous experience in biotech startup and drug commercialization. He has served as a consultant or on the medical/scientific board for over a dozen companies, from large pharma to small biotech, over the last decade. He holds a Ph.D. in pathology from the University of Florida and a bachelor’s in microbiology from the University of Michigan.
Dr. Brusko is currently appointed as an associate professor within the Department of Pathology at the University of Florida, College of Medicine. Dr. Brusko heads up a laboratory that studies the pathogenesis of T1D and the immune system. Dr. Brusko has a Ph.D. in immunology and a bachelor’s in microbiology from the University of Florida.
Dr. Keselowsky has established a nationally and internationally-recognized research program in the field of biomaterials with focus on immune cell interactions with biomaterials. These works have application to biomedical technologies including designing more effective vaccines for diabetes, improving longevity of implanted devices, and decreasing immunogenicity to tissue engineered constructs. Dr. Keselowsky’s areas of expertise include using biomaterials to direct immunological processes and understanding inflammatory responses to biomaterials. Dr. Keselowsky holds a bachelor’s in chemical engineering from the University of South Florida and a Ph.D. in bioengineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology.
Mr. Wasserfall is a Research Assistant Scientist employed at a translational program that makes extensive use of preclinical and clinical research to focus on the immunopathogenesis of T1D. Wasserfall’s M.S. is in clinical chemistry and his bachelor’s is in immunology.
Dr. Marshall earned his Ph.D. in Genetics from the University of Florida College of Medicine and has been with OneVax since 2013. He is principal investigator on two Phase 1 SBIR grants, one R21 grant, and one STTR grant awarded to OneVax from the NIAID of the NIH. His research focuses on toxicological assessment of our microparticle/hydrogel therapy and determining the efficacy of our nanoparticle/regulatory T Cell therapy in preventing diabetic onset.
Dr. Wang earned his Ph.D. inPhysics / Biophotonics at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. He joined OneVax in 2017.
Dr. Looney earned his Ph.D. in Immunology & Microbiology from the University of Florida College of Medicine. He joined OneVax in 2017.
12085 Research Drive, Alachua FL 32615
The Sid Martin Biotechnology Institute is a world-recognized leader in biotechnology business incubation, winning the International Business Innovation Association’s Incubator of the Year in 2013. The institute was recently ranked “World’s Best University Biotechnology Incubator,” according to an international study conducted by the Sweden-based research group UBI, a benchmarking report based on an extensive analysis of 150 incubators in 22 countries.
The institute provides office and laboratory space, access to a variety of shared scientific equipment, hazardous waste pick up, small animal housing and access to the University of Florida’s IACUC and animal care services. More information about the Incubator can be found here: http://sidmartinbio.org/beta/
Feel free to stop by the Sid Martin Biotechnology Incubator during normal business hours to meet our scientists and discuss our technology.
12085 Research Drive, Alachua, FL 32615
Monday - Friday: 9am - 5pm