MEDTECH, INDUSTRIAL IMPACT
Cybin | January 19, 2023
On January 18, 2023, Cybin Inc., a leading biopharmaceutical firm focused on advancing Psychedelics to Therapeutics®, announced the key findings from a feasibility study undertaken by its partner Kernel, which evaluated Kernel's Flow® wearable technology to assess ketamine's psychedelic effect on cerebral cortex hemodynamics. The findings of this Cybin-sponsored study are meant to guide the program's future direction.
The key highlights of the feasibility study are
It offered important proof-of-concept for Kernel Flow as a portable functional system that delivers real-time measurements of blood oxygenation changes in the brain linked with neural activity utilizing Time Domain Near Infrared Spectroscopy (TD-fNIRS).
Exhibited changes in functional brain biomarkers caused by ketamine that are related to potential therapeutic effects, including changes in cortical function associated with psychedelic experiences.
Compared to saline, ketamine reduces the global brain connectivity of the prefrontal region and decreases the brain-wide fractional amplitude of low-frequency fluctuations (fALFF). It has been proposed that fALFF is of particular functional significance within the default mode network, which has been demonstrated to be modulated by psychedelics and is associated with several neuropsychiatric conditions.
A model incorporating neurological and physiological metrics successfully predicted mystical experience scores on the Revised Mystical Experience Questionnaire, which has been shown to mediate reductions in depressive symptomatology in prior studies.
Displayed reliable pulse rate variability (PRV) and physiological measurements of pulse rate (PR) from TD-fNIRS recordings that correspond to those obtained from commercial external photoplethysmography sensors, thereby eliminating the need for external sensors to measure cardiac activity in future experiments.
Ketamine increased PR, decreased PRV, increased absolute oxy-hemoglobin concentrations and decreased deoxy-hemoglobin concentrations while increasing electrodermal activity (measured by an external sensor), providing additional physiological measures of the impact of the ketamine doses administered in the study.
The main goal of the feasibility study was to find out how people who had been given ketamine felt about wearing Kernel Flow while in an altered state of consciousness.
The feasibility study was granted FDA Investigational New Drug approval in October 2021 and US Institutional Review Board approval in January 2022.
Founded in 2019 and headquartered in Canada, Cybin is a biotechnology company that develops psychedelic pharmaceutical treatments for a variety of psychiatric and neurological disorders. It collaborates with a network of world-class partners and internationally recognized scientists to develop safe and effective treatments for patients dealing with a wide range of mental health conditions. The company is currently operating in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Ireland, and the Netherlands.
CELL AND GENE THERAPY, INDUSTRIAL IMPACT
Sana Biotechnology | January 30, 2023
Sana Biotechnology, Inc., a firm focused on producing and delivering engineered cells as medicines, recently announced that the FDA has approved the company's Investigational New Drug (IND) application to begin a first-in-human trial of SC291 in patients with different types of B-cell malignancies.
SC291 is an allogeneic CAR T cell therapy that targets CD19. It is developed by Sana using its hypoimmune platform. The hypoimmune platform's objective is to overcome the allogeneic cells' immunologic rejection, which, if valid for SC291, could lead to prolonged CAR T cell persistence and increased rates of durable complete responses in patients with B-cell lymphomas or leukemias.
The hypoimmune platform includes disruption of the major histocompatibility (MHC) class I and class II expression to conceal cells from the adaptive immune system, which consists of antibody and T cell responses and overexpression of CD47 to inhibit activation of the innate immune cell system, especially macrophages and natural killer (NK) cells. The company has provided evidence from numerous preclinical models demonstrating the potential of this platform to cloak cells from immune detection and the therapeutic potential of SC291 for patients with B-cell malignancies.
About Sana Biotechnology
Founded in 2018, Sana Biotechnology is a firm focused on utilizing engineered cells as medicines for patients. It is constructing differentiated capabilities across the spectrum of cell and gene therapy. The company is motivated by three goals as it seeks solutions for people with poor outcomes or diseases that are currently incurable. The first is the ability to repair and control the genes in any cell in the body. It is developing innovative delivery technologies in order to deliver any payload to any cell in a precise, predictable, and repeatable manner, paving the way for next-generation in vivo gene therapy. Next comes the ability to develop pluripotent stem cells ex vivo into immune-cloaked functional cells, to replace any missing or damaged cells in the body. Finally, it believes that it can also enable broader access to its therapies by focusing on scalable manufacturing solutions, the manufacturing costs, and aligning with key stakeholders.
INDUSTRIAL IMPACT, DIAGNOSTICS
Kite Pharma and Arcellx | January 31, 2023
On January 30, 2023, Kite and Arcellx, Inc. informed that they have completed their previously-announced global strategic collaboration to co-develop and co-market CART-ddBCMA.
CART-ddBCMA is Arcellx's lead late-stage candidate for treating patients with relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma.
For the majority of patients, multiple myeloma is an incurable disease; hence, there is a continuing demand for treatments that are not only effective but also secure and easily available.
Arcellx's T-cell treatment, CART-ddBCMA, uses the company's unique synthetic binder, the D-Domain, and is now being studied in Phase 2 pivotal trials. Kite and Arcellx will work together to develop and market the CART-ddBCMA asset in the United States, while Kite will handle sales and marketing for the product in all other regions.
About Kite Pharma
Kite, a Gilead company, is a global biopharmaceutical company with its headquarters in Santa Monica (California). Cell therapy, which aims to treat and maybe even cure cancer, is the company's main area of research and development. Kite, the industry leader in cell therapy, has successfully administered CAR T-cell treatment to more patients than any other company. Process development, vector production, clinical trial supply, and commercial product manufacturing are all part of Kite's expansive in-house cell therapy manufacturing network, the most extensive in the world.
Clinical biotechnology firm Arcellx, Inc. is rethinking cell treatment by developing novel immunotherapies for patients with cancer and other fatal diseases. The company considers cell therapies one of the most promising areas of modern medicine. Its goal is to improve the quality of life for people everywhere by creating safer, more effective, and widely available cell therapies. CART-ddBCMA is the principal product candidate being developed by Arcellx and is now in Phase 2 pivotal trials for treating relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma (r/r MM). The FDA has recognized CART-potential ddBCMAs by designating them as a regenerative medicine advanced therapy, an orphan drug, and a fast-track product.