Boosting immunity against Gram-negative bacteria by removing natural non-neutralizing antibodies

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Unique and novel approach to boost immunity by priming neutralizing antibodies through the depletion of existing non-neutralizing antibodies with glycoconjugates.

Hospital-acquiered nosocomial infections are a major challenge to patient safety. Antibody-dependent enhancement (ADE) of infection occurs when pre-exisiting non-neutralizing antibodies bind to a pathogen facilitating infection instead of dampening it. The selective depletion of ADE antibodies by glycoconjugates improves serum bactericidal activity and prevents mortality in experimental Gram-negative infections


  • To validate the efficacy of the glycoconjugates in infections caused by Gram-negative bacteria in humans.


Problem to Solve

Hospital-acquiered or nosocomial infections affect 10% of admitted patients, resulting in hightened mortality, morbidity and economic loses. It is estimated that hospital-acquired infections are one of the leading causes of mortality both in Europe and the United States. Gram-negative bacteria are responsible for over 30% of nosocomial infections, and are predominant in cases of ventilator-associated pneumonia and urinay tract infections, whilst in intensive care units (ICUs), Gram-negative account for the vast majority of infections. Thus, Gram-negative are etilogic agents ssociated with severe clinical conditions such as sepsis and septic shock.


The main goal of the project is to establish a new treatment to prevent nosocomial infections, which will improve patient survival along with reducing hospital stays and costs.

Level of Innovation

The use of glycoconjugates to boost immunity is a unique novel approach both for its mechanism of action and effect, which could become a very effective therapy to combat infections by Gram-negative. The possibility of boosting immunity by only depleting the non-neutralizing antibodies in the body represents a radical innovation as a therapeutic approach, which could also be used in other infections and cancer.


Head of the Innate Immunity and Pathology of the Critical Patient research group

Rafael Mañez Mendiluce

Project leader

Project manager

Daniel Bello

Ph.D., Head of the Microbiology department

M. Angeles Dominguez

Fundació Institut d’Investigació Biomèdica de Bellvitge

Ph.D., Innovation & Business Development Team

Gisela Llorente

Fundació Institut d’Investigació Biomèdica de Bellvitge

MSc., Innovation & Business Development Team

Eva Olivera

Fundació Institut d’Investigació Biomèdica de Bellvitge


CEO at Aelix Therapeutics

José Luis Cabero


Scientific Area

Preventive medicine

Business area


Research center

Fundació Institut d’Investigació Biomèdica de Bellvitge