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Enzolytics Technologies Targeting HIV and the CoronaVirus
Charles S. Cotropia
(OTC PINK: ENZC)
Interview conducted by:
Lynn Fosse, Senior Editor
Published – December 7, 2020
CEOCFO: Mr. Cotropia, what is the concept behind Enzolytics, Inc?
Mr. Cotropia: Enzolytics, Inc. is a drug development company with two separate but complementary therapy platforms for treating infectious diseases, including treatment for HIV. One technology, invented by Harry Zhabilov, the CSO of our company, includes a patented antiviral peptide that has been tested in clinical studies at the National Center of Infectious and Parasitic Diseases in Bulgaria. In these trials, this therapeutic, known as ITV-
This Enzolytics anti-
The Company is now combining this technology with recently acquired technology, created by BioClonetics Immunotherapeutics, for creating fully human anti-
The therapies of Enzolytics’ two technologies, that produced by Enzolytics and that created by BioClonetics, are expected to be synergistic. Additionally, because the HIV virus and the CoronaVirus have correlative structures and with our knowledge of how our monoclonal antibodies neutralize HIV, we are now developing monoclonal antibodies for treating the CoronaVirus.
CEOCFO: Isn’t HIV pretty well taken care of now?
Mr. Cotropia: That is the view, particularly in the U.S., but it is a misconception. There are over 36 million people in the world infected with HIV. There are more than 2 million new infections every year and over one million people die from the virus annually. Ten percent of the HIV deaths are children – amounting to over 300 children deaths per day. That number of children who die from HIV is greater than those that die from cancer.
The reason there is the belief that HIV is no longer a problem is that there is now, and has been for years, a treatment but no cure. The treatment is through administering anti-
There are several downsides to the use of anti-
Moreover, the anti-
Thus, these issues can be resolved by implementation of a better HIV treatment, using immunotherapy with the administration of our technologies including broadly neutralizing monoclonal antibodies.
CEOCFO: I think to a lot of people it seems the crisis is over.
Mr. Cotropia: Your observation is exactly right! The perception is that the HIV crisis is over, but it is a misconception. The extent of the world crisis can be appreciated by the facts I just mentioned, namely, there are over 36 million people in the world infected and only 40% of those have access to the anti-
The current anti-
Just as monoclonal antibodies were made available to successfully treat President Trump when he contracted the CoronaVirus, monoclonal antibodies can be made available to treat HIV patients and we believe we are on the verge of providing and validating specific therapies in order to safely and successfully treat HIV.
CEOCFO: From your recent press release, you have a proprietary methodology for producing fully human OGG1 monoclonal antibodies. How is your approach different?
Mr. Cotropia: There are a number of different ways of producing monoclonal antibodies. The procedure is significant and our procedure differs from those used by other pharma companies.
In some cases, other pharma companies produce “humanized” rat and mouse monoclonal antibodies where the original antibody affinity and specificity are not maintained and the chances of immunogenicity are increased. Our methodology also differs significantly from other pharma approaches using the transgenic mouse model, which is a human immune system that has been “grafted” within a mouse model having been "vaccinated" with specific and selected purified virus proteins.
In contrast, our method starts with human "immune-
Additionally, our antibodies retain the original natural antibody affinity and specificity, and have lower risk of immunogenicity when used as a therapeutic. They will provide broad-
There are an infinite number of distinct anti-
CEOCFO: What are you looking at regarding COVID?
Mr. Cotropia: We have produced an HIV monoclonal antibody that had been successfully tested in five international labs where it neutralized 95% of all strains against which it was tested. There are 6000 different strains of the HIV virus now known. We know that that our antibody is effective and we know the target site on the virus resulting in neutralization of the HIV virus. For an antibody to be effective it has to attack a neutralizable site on the virus that is always there, does not mutate from strain to strain. Knowing the binding site of our HIV monoclonal antibody, and then examining the CoronaVirus amino acid sequence, a correlation in the structures has been identified by our CSO, Dr. Joseph Cotropia, between the CoronaVirus and the HIV virus. With knowledge of these homologous viral structures, monoclonal antibodies will be created that target the corresponding “Achilles Heel” site on the CoronaVirus, an expected conserved immutable and neutralizable site on the virus. Additionally, using artificial intelligence, we will examine the numerous different strains of the virus to identify other conserved sites and produce additional monoclonal antibody targeting them. This is for the purpose of producing a “collection” or “cocktail” of antibodies for therapeutic use. We recognize that there are now known over 16,000 different variations or strains of the CoronaVirus, each slightly different due to mutation. A successful monoclonal antibody “cocktail” therapy must include multiple antibodies that specifically target several immutable sites and which results in neutralization.
For example, we all now know that President Trump received a combination of two Regeneron antibodies. Eli Lilly has also produced an anti-
Also, as all experts in the field of monoclonal antibodies agree, including Dr. Anthony Fauci, head of the NIAID/NIH, to have an effective therapy, we must have multiple monoclonal antibodies that target various sites on the virus -
CEOCFO: I realize your brother is the medical person behind the company, but what led you to take on this role. You have been a practicing attorney for many years. Why this challenge now?
Mr. Cotropia: Obviously, it is very rewarding to hope that we will produce something that will be so meaningful to so many people. Our initial focus has been on HIV, a still devastating disease which is very much still with us and certainly more so in other counties. That is because in the U.S., the focus is off of HIV; because most U.S. citizens who contract HIV can afford $20,000 a year, through insurance or otherwise, and be treated. Unfortunately, many of those who have taken anti-
Now, we turn to the CoronaVirus and that is something that is on the front page of the U.S. and world news. We definitely have taken note of that. How do you address it? The antibodies that are being produced by other pharma companies may very well have initial beneficial effects. However, a solution requires more than one antibody to be effective. If their antibody targets a site that mutates, and that is what has happened to every other monoclonal antibody produced by the NIH and big pharma in their attempts to treat HIV, it is ultimately not going to be effective. The virus will mutate around it. Therefore, what worked, perhaps, for President Trump, will not necessarily work for you or me in the future. Consequently, as the virus mutates over and over again—in order to be therapeutically successful—you have to target a site that is immutable.
We do know that our identified initial target on the CoronaVirus is significantly different from the targets of the antibodies produced by Regeneron and Eli Lily. Thus, with a combination of our proposed broadly neutralizing anti-
If you look back to the history of HIV, the NIH, with Vaccine Research Center and all the other companies that the NIH has supported, they all attempted for forty years to produce an effective anti-
CEOCFO: What is your funding position? Development and eventually commercialization are very expensive.
Mr. Cotropia: Yes, that is a very relevant question. We will be securing long term financing for advancing our technology. We have begun the process of producing variants of our existing anti-
Success in these steps will bring the necessary funding for success. Demonstrating positive results will translate into the necessary funding due to the dire need for these therapies. As I mentioned, there is not going to be one bullet that fends off either the HIV virus or the CoronaVirus. It will be necessary to have more than one. We welcome Eli Lilly and Regeneron in their initial antibody production and that success is all to be rewarded and celebrated. However, as we have seen in the past with HIV, it is going to be a very difficult to completely control the CoronaVirus and all of its mutated forms. Success will require multiple therapeutics and we know that monoclonal antibodies will certainly be in the picture and in the front line of successful treatments.
Another important aspect of our technology is that identification of a neutralizable binding site on the virus can lead to the creation of a vaccine – one that would be of a different format from the current mRNA vaccines now being produced. Specifically, the vaccine would be based on the known broadly neutralizing antibody and the highly conserved binding site to produce an active immunization that would not comprise nor incorporate an immunization process using nucleic acid constructs. In this process, a protective active immunization would use the neutralizable binding site on the virus as subunit peptide vaccine. Use of peptide sub-
Therefore, different vaccines may be produced in very different ways, some of which hopefully will be very effective and very safe as to their long-
CEOCFO: There are so many new ideas, especially around COVID. Why does Enzolytics’s approach stand out?
Mr. Cotropia: We have a patented anti-
As a complementary treatment for HIV, we have created monoclonal antibodies for treating HIV. These antibodies can accurately be identified as being “fully human” broadly neutralizing monoclonal antibodies in that the starting point is from human “immune-
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“There are an infinite number of distinct anti-