News, Research and Development

Groundbreaking peanut allergy therapy

The Victorian Government’s investment into a local biotechnology firm will bring peanut allergy sufferers around the world one step closer to an innovative new treatment that could save lives.

Minister for economic growth Tim Pallas announced Breakthrough Victoria’s $12 million investment into Aravax as part of a $66 million funding round to develop a novel peanut allergy treatment.

“This investment is an important step forward in advancing healthcare for millions of Australians with food allergies and introducing life-changing health technology to the world.” said Pallas.

Aravax is a clinical stage biotechnology company focused on revolutionising food allergy treatment through its product, PVX108. The immunotherapy uses synthetic peptides to mimic key parts of peanut proteins with the potential to retrain the immune system to tolerate peanuts without causing allergic reactions.

“Victoria is home to world-class scientific research institutions. It’s exciting to receive the local support, global recognition and this investment Aravax needs to expand clinical trials in Victoria and the United States,” said Aravax CEO Pascal Hickey.

Early research at Alfred Health and Monash University has developed this unique treatment, requiring a monthly dose rather than a daily dose required by current treatments.

These trials are a step forward in bringing cutting-edge healthcare to the more than five million Australians living with food allergies.

Aravax has received approval from the U.S Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Australia’s Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) for Phase 2 trials in both countries. Phase 1 clinical trials were successfully completed for adults in Victoria in 2018.

Phase 2 trails, which will evaluate the treatment’s effect in children aged 4 to 17, will take place in clinics in Australia and the United States.

We’re excited to invest in Aravax. Victoria’s biotech sector really is world class. This therapy, developed right here in Victoria, has the potential to change the lives of peanut allergy suffers across the world,” said Breakthrough Victoria CEO Grant Dooley. 

Investment into Aravax builds on the Labor Government’s continued support of the health technology industry, which is driven by Breakthrough Victoria and the $20 million Australian Medtech Manufacturing Centre.

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