Spinnaker Biosciences is an emerging drug delivery company with proprietary technology, licensed from the UC San Diego, for intraocular controlled delivery using porous silicon photonic crystals. The company’s technology uses an innovative technique to produce porous silicon photonic crystals. Pulsed electrochemical etching of a silicon chip produces a multilayered porous nanostructure.

Its products are expected to require low quantities of drug for controlled intraocular delivery and have a low cost of manufacturing. The products can be formulated to accommodate the wide range of drugs used to treat serious eye diseases (e.g. anti-VEGF agents, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, doxorubicin, corticosteroids, etc.) The company’s disease targets include age-related macular degeneration (ARMD), macular edema associated with diabetic retinopathy, retinal vein occlusion, cataract surgery, uveitis, and prevention of proliferative vitreoretinopathy (PVR) following ocular injury/retinal detachment.

Spinnaker’s first product will be biodegradable, porous silicon photonic crystals incorporating a drug for the treatment of ARMD. ARMD is the leading cause of vision loss worldwide and typically affects individuals 50 years of age and older. As life expectancy increases, the disease is becoming a growing problem. More than 1.6 million people in the U.S. currently have one or both eyes affected by the advanced stage of wet ARMD and about 200,000 new cases are diagnosed each year. In recent years new treatments have become available for people afflicted with wet ARMD. These new treatments are directed at inhibiting Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF), a substance that stimulates the growth and leakage of abnormal new blood vessels. These treatments involve multiple injections into the eye (intravitreal injections). Because these injections have to be given every 1-2 months, for the patient they are inconvenient, costly, and increase the risk of infection. The major advantage of Spinnaker’s approach is delivery of drug using a single intraocular injection that is expected to last from six months to a year and allows monitoring of drug release optically due to the photonic properties of the delivery system.

Corporate Development Strategy
Following demonstration of safety and clinical proof of efficacy, Spinnaker will establish commercial partnerships with pharmaceutical companies to generate revenue through milestone payments and royalties on sales.

Above graphic is an example of an intravitreal injection.

Spinnaker Biosciences, Inc.
665 San Rodolfo Drive Suite 124/165, Solana Beach, CA 92075
Founded: 2009

Virgil D. Thompson JD – CEO and Director

Private Financing
Series A: $2.5 million

Technology Innovators:

Michael Sailor, PhD
Professor, Chemistry and Biochemistry
Division of Physical Sciences


William Freeman, MD
Professor, Ophthalmology
Director, Joan and Irwin Jacobs Retina Center,
Shiley Eye Center