TNI BioTech aims for world leadership in the area of immunology. It plans to fight infectious diseases by using Methionine Enkephalin (MENK), a human hormone produced naturally by the human immune system. It is believed that MENK is toxic to tumor cells but does not hurt the human body. TNIB’s most advanced clinical programs involve immunotherapy that works by isolating a patient’s lymphocytes and then incubating them together with an enriching external incubation system. After incubation, the patient’s lymphocytes are reinfused back into the patient where they combat and destroy tumor cells.
Although TNIB considers any condition that results in altered-immune response a target for investigation, the company will most likely focus its efforts on using MENK in the treatment of 5 major types of illnesses: 1) Autoimmune states such as rheumatoid arthritis and multiple sclerosis; 2) As an adjunct to antibiotics in the treatment of infectious diseases; 3) In cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy, radiation treatments, or surgery; 4) Patients with AIDS, in combination with retroviral drug therapy; and 5) In wound healing or herpes viral infections.
To further its goal of prominence in the field of immunology, the company recently acquired certain technology developed by Dr. Bernard Bihari, a well-known AIDS researcher. The portfolio portfolio contains six patents and applications related to:
• Cancer of the prostate, lymphoproliferative syndrome, including such diseases as malignant lymphoma, chronic lymphocytic leukaemia, Hodgkin’s lymphoma, and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma;
• Infectious diseases such as chronic herpes virus infections, including chronic genital herpes caused by the herpes simplex virus, Type 2, chronic infections due to the Epstein-Barr virus, and chronic inflammatory conditions including chronic fatigue syndrome; and
• A treatment method for humans infected with HTLV-III (AIDS) virus, including patients clinically diagnosed as suffering from AIDS and those suffering from AIDS-related complex (ARC).
Dr. Bernard Bihari was the discoverer of the clinical effects of Low Dose Naltrexone (LDN) in humans. In his groundbreaking clinical trial of patients with HIV/AIDS at Downstate Medical Center in 1985-86, Dr. Bihari discovered the significant effectiveness of LDN in protecting the battered immune systems of those who were infected. Equipped with the clinical trial knowledge, he entered private practice in an attempt to counter the then untreatable disease by using LDN – and did so in some cases dramatically. TNIB intends to continue Dr. Bihari’s work on the use of LDN by conducting Phase III trials.
Asked for comment on the purchase of Dr. Bihari’s technology, Dr. Nicholas Plotnikoff, Chairman of TNI BioTech, Inc., said, “I worked with Dr. Bernard Bihari for many years and I believe acquiring all of the technology of Dr. Bihari will allow the company, we hope, to move forward to phase III clinical trials in both the United States and Africa within the next 12 months. In our opinion, LDN holds great promise for the millions of people worldwide with autoimmune diseases or central nervous system disorders or who face a deadly cancer. It could prove to be the first low-cost, easy to administer, and side-effect-free therapy for Cancer, HIV/AIDS, MS and Crohn’s disease.”
Another major step forward for the company was Dr. Ronald Herberman joining the company as Senior Vice President of Research and Development and Chief Medical Officer. Dr. Herberman’s responsibilities include leading the company’s global development, clinical research, and medical initiatives.
Dr. Herberman is widely recognized as a top researcher in the field of immunology. He has received many awards, including the Lifetime Science Award from the Institute for Advanced Studies in Immunology and Aging. During the period of 1981 to 1990, Dr. Herberman was recognized as one of the 100 most-cited research authors in the immunology area.
Dr. Nicholas Plotnikoff, TNI BioTech, Inc. Chairman, noted that the company’s hiring of Dr. Herberman reflects TNI BioTech’s highest priority: to become a world-class leader in groundbreaking therapeutics for patients who are afflicted with cancer, autoimmune, and infectious disease, including HIV/AIDS.
“In order to successfully become a world-class leader,” stated Dr. Plotnikoff, “we need significant expertise in clinical, regulatory and leadership development, along with a deep knowledge of immunology and Dr. Herberman brings demonstrated strengths in these areas having made major discoveries in his field and has fostered the application of this information to novel approaches to cancer therapy, diagnosis and prevention during his time as a leader at the National Cancer Institute and Founding Director of the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute.”
Dr. Plotnikoff added, “During his career, Dr. Herberman has been recognized as a leader in the field of immunology. The phenomenon of natural killer (NK) cell-mediated cytotoxicity against tumors was first discovered in Dr. Herberman’s laboratory at the National Cancer Institute in the early 1970s. In addition to his pioneering investigation of NK cells, Dr. Herberman has played a leading role in multiple areas of tumor immunology. TNI BioTech therapies and treatments draw upon the theory that medicine can enlist the body’s own immune system to combat cancer and autoimmune diseases that are Dr. Herberman’s specialty. His experience and strategic perspective precisely meet TNI BioTech’s needs today.”
Dr. Herberman commented: “I am very excited to assume a leadership position in TNI Biotech Inc. I have had the privilege to know Dr. Plotnikoff for about 30 years and I have been very impressed with his pioneering studies of the effects of opioid peptides on the immune system. I am convinced that TNI Biotech’s drugs have much potential for the treatment of not only cancer, but also a range of other diseases including multiple sclerosis, HIV/AIDS, and Crohn’s Disease. I intend to rapidly build on a pre-existing foundation of clinical research with low dose naltrexone and MENK, and develop innovative approaches to use them to stimulate the immune system to make an impact on these and other chronic diseases.”
In addition to his other duties, Dr. Herberman will be a member of the company’s executive leadership team. He will report to Dr. Eugene Youkilis, President and the Board of Directors. As the company’s Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Herberman will employee his extensive experience in all phases of drug development and drug portfolio management — including acquisition of new assets and relationships with regulators and government agencies. Dr. Herberman will also retain specific accountabilities relating to patient safety.
To learn more about the company and its immunotherapy technologies, visit www.tnibiotech.com
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