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pipeline | leading candidate


Acorn’s lead technology, T-Fusion™ is a platform that enables an expanding class of therapeutic agents now on the market – recombinant therapeutic proteins - to be given orally rather than by injection as all are now administered. T-Fusion™ uses transferrin, a transport protein that is resistant to gastrointestinal digestion, to orally deliver therapeutically effective doses of proteins to the body. Our leading candidate, ACN-8337, is an oral formulation of G-CSF, utilizing the T-Fusion™ technology.

T-Fusion™ is applicable to the oral delivery of a wide range of recombinant therapeutic proteins, such as erythropoietin, growth factors, blood clotting factors, growth hormones, reproductive hormones, and replacement enzymes. The worldwide market for therapeutic recombinant proteins was over $40 Billion in 2007.


Recombinant protein and peptide pharmaceuticals have become mainstream in the pharmaceutical industry with every major drug company developing and marketing such products. Recombinant proteins are man-made proteins that replicate existing proteins that serve various functions in the body. Typically, these drugs help patients - whose bodies are compromised due to illness, disease or treatment regimen - to produce desired proteins. Patients now take these drugs by injection, as no other alternatives are commercially available.

Despite a demonstrated need for protein and peptide drugs, doctors and patients can be reluctant to prescribe and use such medications because of the need to have frequent repeat injections to acquire and maintain a therapeutically useful drug dosage. It is thought that by enabling protein and peptide therapeutics to be administered orally, doctors can improve drug bioavailability, increase the ease of administration of these drugs, and generate wider patient use and acceptance. Substantial cost savings would be afforded to the health care industry by eliminating or reducing the number of patient visits and related costs associated with injections.