Shares in Exopharm (ASX:EX1) jumped this morning after the Melbourne biotech announced it was building multiple revenue streams and positive data confirming the safety of its off-the-shelf exosome product, Plexaris.

Exopharm said it had signed a non-binding heads of agreement with the Finnish Red Cross Blood Service to work together and develop a plan for the FRCBS to license Exopharm’s LEAP technology on commercial terms.

LEAP – Ligand-based Exosome Affinity Purification – is Exopharm’s breakthrough process to purify exosomes, vesicles secreted by adult stem cells for intercellular signalling and that have been found to stimulate tissue regeneration. Exosomes have also shown promise in delivering targeted medicine including RNA and protein therapeutics.

The national blood service in Finland, FRCBS holds a leadership position in developing exosome-based medicine and is interested in using Exopharm’s technology to produce and sell exosomes isolated from blood components.

“FRCBS has been working for many years on developing potential uses of extracellular vesicles from blood components such as platelets and plasma,” said Dr Saara Laitinen, R&D manager at FRCBS and the leader of the country’s National EV Consortium, EVE.

“A critical challenge has been purifying EVs efficiently and reproducibly. Once I understood the potential of LEAP for the purification of EVs from our blood components, it was clear the value that a collaboration could provide.”

Exopharm’s chief commercial officer, Chris Baldwin, called Dr Laitinen and her team “the perfect first partners for manufacturing Plexaris and other blood EV products for Europe.

“For Exopharm, this is the first step in a series of anticipated licensing opportunities in 2021 for LEAP.”

Exopharm will present a webinar next week to the Blood Centers of America, a coalition of 60 independent member centres that’s the largest blood supply network in the country. Both Dr Laitinen and Dr Baldwin will discuss the potential of exosomes and Exopharm’s LEAP technology, Exopharm said.

Plexaris safety confirmed

Separately, Exopharm announced that its PLEXOVAL II phase 1 safety study had found no “untoward or unexpected” safety events after all 11 study participants were treated with Plexaris in small wounds induced in their shoulders.

All the wounds healed without skin defects, abnormal scarring or abnormal cosmetic appearance.

“The results from this study are very encouraging and are consistent with preclinical testing and the expected safety profile of a purified platelet product,” said Dr Angus Tester, Exopharm’s head of product evaluation.

“This is an important milestone proving Exopharm’s manufacturing capability of a medical-grade product.”

Traditional therapeutics derived from human blood and plasma play a critical role in health care worldwide, Exopharm notes, adding that they represent over $US30 billion ($39 billion) each year in sales.

At noon, Exopharm shares were up 11.2 per cent to 64.5c.

This article was developed in collaboration with Exopharm, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.

This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.