Overcoming the barriers to cell and gene therapies

ATMPs are varied and complex, ranging from potential one-off curative treatments to treatments tailored to a specific individual. As such, they differ significantly from ‘traditional’ medicinal treatments, something which has been recognised by regulators in Europe: the European Parliament introduced ATMPs as a new class in 2007 and that same year saw the establishment of the European Medicines Agency’s Committee for Advanced Therapies (CAT) to address the specific demands of this growing class of medicines.

Spotlight

AlphaVax

The AlphaVax pipeline is targeting pandemic influenza and cytomegalovirus (CMV), as well as grant and collaborator-supported programs in HIV, prostate and breast cancer, and several biodefense vaccines. Clinical data from the first alphavaccine human trials have confirmed safety and immunological activity in man.

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MedTech

Wisconsin biotech companies could play key roles in long-term economic recovery from COVID-19 pandemic

Article | July 13, 2022

Whether it’s called a modern “Manhattan Project” or a medical moon shot, the concept of long-term economic recovery rests on how confident people are they won’t risk serious illness by venturing forth in public again. Wisconsin stands to be a significant part of such an undertaking, whatever it’s called. The shorter-term debate is well under way over the gradual lifting of COVID-19 emergency rules, such as the now-extended “safer-at-home” order in Wisconsin. At least a dozen states, including regional coalitions on the East and West coasts, are exploring next steps as they seek to balance responses to the virus with calls for reopening the economy, at least, in part. Wisconsin’s ability to shape longer-term responses will come from private and public resources, which range from companies engaged in production of diagnostics.

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MedTech

AI and Biotechnology: The Future of Healthcare Industry

Article | October 7, 2022

Artificial intelligence has grasped the foundation in biotech. It can have the most innovative impact on biotechnology. AI has already established its presence in our day-to-day life. AI has made the existence of self-driving cars possible. Likewise, the benefits and quality that it can contribute to biotech can also be felt. With AI, bio technicians will be able to enhance virtual screening, overlook preliminary datasets from clinics, and decipher an enormous amount of information. It can also help in improving the medication process by gathering and analyzing every bit of information. The Significance of AI in Biotechnology In the past few years, the application of artificial intelligence in the biotechnology industry has shifted from being sci-fi to sci-fact. A vast number of biotech companies like Deep Genomics are adopting AI for making data-driven decisions and use analytics tools to work efficiently. Unlike the AI robots in sci-fi that are ready to take over the world. AI designed for biotech has been designed to solve certain problems or complete a bunch of tasks by using automated algorithms. The aim of AI technology for biotech is to collect insights along with hidden patterns from large amounts of data. All the different industries of biotech including agriculture, animal, medical, industrial, and bioinformatics are gradually being affected by artificial intelligence. Moreover, the biotech industry is realizing that AI enables them some of the important strength to their business, including: Expanding accessibility Cost-effectiveness Critical predictions Efficient decision-making Research centers like PwC have also estimated output of $15.7 trillion by 2030 solely with AI contribution in industries. A survey revealed that about 44% of life science experts are using AI for R&D activities, as well. Use of AI in Biotechnology Altering Biomedical and Clinical Data So far the most developed use of AI is its ability to read voluminous data records and interpret them. It can prove to be a life-save for bio technicians who would have to examine that much data from research publications by themselves for the validation of their hypothesis. With the help of AI, clinical studies of patients will also become easier as all the examination reports and prescriptions will be stored in one place for cross-reference. Furthermore, it will also help in blending and fetching data into usable formats for analysis. Test Result Prediction Through trial and error, AI along with machine learning can help in predicting the response of the patient to certain drugs to provide more effective outcomes. Drug Design & Discovery AI plays a vital role whether it’s designing a new molecule or identifying new biological targets. It helps in identifying and validating drugs. It reduces the cost and time spent on the entire drug trial process and reaches the market. Personalized Medications for Rare Diseases With the combination of body scan results, patients’ body and analytics, AI can also help in detecting dangerous diseases at an early stage. Improving Process of Manufacturing To improve the process of manufacturing in biotechnology, AI offers a wide range of opportunities. It controls quality, reduces wastage, improves useability, and minimizes the designing time. Moving Towards AI-Enhanced Biotech Future Ever since the concept of artificial intelligence has arrived, being curious by nature, humans have started working towards achieving this goal. It has been growing at a fast pace while showing unbelievable growth and achievements at times. In comparison to the traditional methods used in the biotechnology industry, AI-based methods seem more reliable and accurate. In the upcoming years, it will show its success by improving the quality of health people have. You can also develop your AI-based application or know more about it by taking IT consultations.

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MedTech

Top 3 Biotech Clinical Data Management Trends to Watch in 2022

Article | July 16, 2022

Introduction The administration of medical records and data has advanced significantly during the past few decades. Clinical data management, which was once only a small subset of biotech research organizations, has now developed into a mission-critical, specialized unit. In the late 1990s, electronic data capture (EDC) began to alter the traditional function of clinical data management. After that, the data configuration and management of data queries for the EDC system fell under the purview of clinical data management services. Today, clinical data management is not only responsible for managing the clinical data configuration and data queries but also developing and implementing data administration plans, ensuring data accuracy and completeness, and maintaining optimum data security. In recent years, as digital technologies have gained acceptance around the globe, data has become a vital aspect in decision-making across numerous industries, and the life sciences and biotechnology sectors are no exception. Using data has provided granular insights to biotech organizations, assisting them in creating breakthroughs in drug development and medical research and signifying the importance of clinical trial management systems in these medical verticals. The Biggest Biotech Clinical Data Management Trends to Know About Today The future of clinical data management is contingent upon the implementation of systems and regulations. It is imperative for all organizations participating in a medical or life science trial to have transparent rules in place for sharing and retaining patient data. Also, there is a need to have a standardized format for maintaining these records and documents related to trials. This assists biotech organizations in reducing the chances of ambiguity regarding who owns what kind of data or paperwork at any given time. Over the past couple of years, the focus of the life science and biotechnology industries has shifted towards developing more effective medications and therapies, implementing personalized treatment, and finding cures for diseases such as cancer and AIDS. In response to this, a substantial rise in the number of clinical trials is being witnessed globally. As the number of clinical trials continues to accelerate, the spending on these trials rises as well. In response to this, the worldwide cost of conducting clinical trials is anticipated to reach US$ 49.80 billion in 2022. With the transition of the world from traditional to digital, medical professionals and biotech businesses are increasingly shifting towards adopting high-tech and reliable clinical trial management systems for various applications, starting from diagnosis and clinical trials to patient data documentation. But, what are the future trends in biotechnology clinical data management? Let’s discuss. Cloud-Based Clinical Metadata Repositories Automation is emerging as a new frontier in the biotech clinical data management domain, along with other innovative technologies such as artificial intelligence and machine learning. Because of this, life science establishments are witnessing a huge shift from paper-based documentation toward data-based documentation, which is creating mountains of research, compliance, and clinical data. The growing demand for new and more effective medications and drugs is augmenting the need to expedite clinical trials. This is resulting in an increased number of initiatives aimed at optimizing clinical trial processes to prepare and launch successful trials. However, pharmaceutical and biotechnology laboratories are encountering several challenges in collecting, managing, and analyzing metadata due to its complexities. So, what is the best solution to this problem? The answer to this is cloud-based clinical metadata repositories. Clinical research facilities are leveraging advanced, all-in-one, cloud-based clinical metadata repositories to assist them in centralizing and managing metadata; increasing metadata quality, consistency, and accuracy; and speeding up clinical trial management, documentation, and compliance processes. Shift Towards Digital Solutions Electronic Case Report Form Adequate research and accurate data are crucial for a clinical trial to succeed. Whether developing new drugs, medication, or therapies; conducting life science research; or studying the latest clinical trial systems, it is best to use electronic solutions as it reduces the room for mistakes during the transition of clinical data from paper-based format. Realizing this, biotech organizations are shifting towards using electronic case report forms to speed up record retrieval, improve record security, and cut down on operational costs associated with running clinical trials. The electronic case report form assists in lowering the failure rate of the clinical trial, enhancing efficiency, and optimizing security along with improving clinical trial documentation and productivity, further driving its adoption in the medical space. Electronic Clinical Outcome Assessment Electronic clinical outcome assessment is surfacing as one of the fast-growing future trends in biotechnology. It allows clinical trial facilities to automate data entry and improve the reliability of the collected information. The technology enables clinical trial institutions to automatically record patient-provided information about side effects, symptoms, drug timing, and other aspects during the clinical trial for increased precision. It also helps these institutions analyze the results of medication or therapy in clinical trials and lets clinical researchers use medical technologies like biosensor-enabled devices, self-service applications, and medical wearables for evaluation. Hence, biotech clinical facilities are increasingly deploying advanced electronic clinical outcome assessment systems to ensure adherence to protocols and regulations. Clinical Trial Customization The success of a new drug is determined by numerous factors other than its effectiveness, safety, and creativity of its developers, such as a successful clinical trial. Each clinical trial involves a number of decision-making points, and one wrong choice in any of these aspects can jeopardize the success of the entire endeavor. A crucial component of making well-informed decisions is data management, which is a part of clinical study as a whole. Clinical trial customization is emerging as one of the most prominent biotech clinical trial management trends. Every clinical trial is unique and needs a tailored approach to be successful. With the emergence of the trend of personalized treatment around the globe, biotech and pharmaceutical organizations are adopting innovative customized clinical trial management solutions to accelerate the pace of clinical trials and approvals. This is giving clinical researchers innovative ways to come up with new medicines for patients and streamline the clinical data as per the requirements for faster approvals. What Are the Key Clinical Data Management Challenges Faced by Biotech Companies? Groundbreaking medical interventions are of no use without reliable, accurate, and extensive clinical trial data. Without the data, biotech and pharmaceutical companies will not be able to provide the assurance of safety and efficacy required to bring the medication to market. Regulatory bodies such as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), and others are putting stricter rules in place to ensure the quality of clinical data. In addition, the fast-changing clinical development environment is creating more obstacles for biotech and medical spaces to ensure the accuracy, standard, and completeness of the clinical trial data. Hence, clinical teams are spending valuable time cleaning up data instead of analyzing it. Time spent trying to figure out issues with clinical trial data is detrimental and expensive but also mission-critical. This is because a small issue in the data can lead to numerous consequences, from small delays to calamitous setbacks, making it necessary to rerun clinical trials. This problem will only get more challenging to address as the volume of data and the types of data sources continue to grow. Here are some of the major clinical data management challenges that biotech firms encounter Standardization of Clinical Metadata Stringent Regulatory Compliance Increased Clinical Trial Complexity Mid-Study Changes Why Are Clinical Data Management Systems Garnering Popularity in the Biotech Industry? With the changing regulatory and clinical landscape, biotech and pharmaceutical companies are facing several obstacles in the management of clinical data and clinical trials. In addition, regulatory agencies are moving toward integrated electronic systems, which is making it more and more important for clinical laboratories to change the format of their submissions. Because of this, several biotech clinical labs are focusing on adopting innovative laboratory solutions, such as biotech clinical data management systems, to meet the need for standardized data inputs and replace all manual ways of working with electronic systems. A clinical data management system establishes the framework for error-free data collection and high-quality data submission, resulting in speedier drug discovery and shorter time-to-market. These solutions are gaining huge traction among biotech and pharmaceutical companies, owing to their ability to effectively manage clinical data, accelerate clinical trials, and ensure compliance. Let’s see some of the features of biotech clinical data management software that are most sought after by life-science companies Controlled, standardized data repository. Centralized data analysis and administration. Reduced operational expenditures for clinical data processes. Enhanced process effectiveness. Superior submission quality Compliance with predefined standards. Clinical Data Management Systems: The Future The role of clinical data management systems is evolving at a rapid pace as the life science and medical industries continue to incorporate digital solutions for diverse operations. These systems are being used in a variety of biotech clinical settings, ranging from clinical data compliance to data science and analytics, to help them analyze large and growing volumes of clinical data. Hence, a number of high-tech medical companies are aiming at integrating innovative technologies, such as artificial intelligence and machine learning, into clinical data management software to automate clinical data management tasks, improve clinical data submission, and enhance data quality. These new biotech clinical management technologies are anticipated to help life science laboratories gain a better understanding of diseases and speed up clinical trials in the coming years. FAQ What is a clinical data management system? A clinical data management system (CDMS) is a tool used in clinical research to track, record, and manage clinical trial data across medical establishments such as biotech laboratories. What are the key functions of the biotech clinical data management system? Some of the key functions of biotech clinical data management system are Documentation of Protocols and Regulations Patient Recruitment Real-time Clinical Study Analytics Reporting Investigator Relationship Management Electronic Visit Report Why is a clinical data management system needed for clinical trials today? A clinical data management system helps shorten the time from drug development to marketing by assisting in the collection of high-quality, statistically sound, and accurate data from clinical trials.

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2 Small-Cap Biotech Stocks You Haven't Heard of, But Should Know About

Article | April 17, 2020

With everything that's going on with the COVID-19 pandemic, many healthcare companies have grabbed plenty of spotlight during these challenging times. At the same time, a number of otherwise promising businesses have slipped under the radar. That's especially true for small-cap biotech stocks that aren't actively involved in developing tests, vaccines or treatments for COVID-19. Vaccine developers, protective equipment producers, and healthcare service providers are all attracting plenty of attention during this pandemic, but there are just as many promising biotech stocks that aren't involved in these areas. Here are two such companies that you might have missed, but they deserve a spot on your watch list.

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Spotlight

AlphaVax

The AlphaVax pipeline is targeting pandemic influenza and cytomegalovirus (CMV), as well as grant and collaborator-supported programs in HIV, prostate and breast cancer, and several biodefense vaccines. Clinical data from the first alphavaccine human trials have confirmed safety and immunological activity in man.

Related News

Cell and Gene Therapy, Diagnostics

NorthX Biologics, a leading Nordic development and manufacturing organisation announces acquisition of a biologics manufacturing unit from Valneva

Globenewswire | July 04, 2023

NorthX Biologics (‘NorthX’), a leading Nordic development and manufacturing organisation with a focus on advanced biologics, CGT (cell and gene therapy) and vaccines, announced today the successful acquisition of the Stockholm-based Clinical Trial Manufacturing unit from Valneva Sweden, significantly expanding capabilities. The acquisition includes the transfer of a multi-purpose facility, situated in the Stockholm life science cluster, close to Karolinska University Hospital. In addition, 30 staff members who currently operate the facility will also join NorthX. The site and staff have a long history with extensive experience of serving both Valneva internally and also working with external customers on a contract development and manufacturing basis. With expertise in mammalian expression systems and viral vectors, the capabilities complement those of NorthX’s existing business of advanced microbial based manufacturing of proteins and plasmid DNA. The acquired unit excels in process development, scale up, GMP production, quality control analytics, and quality assurance/release and is capable of working with Biosafety Level (BSL) 2/2+ and BSL 3 organisms. With this expansion, NorthX enhances its capabilities and can offer comprehensive services to a wider range of clients globally. Janet Hoogstraate, currently Managing Director of Valneva Sweden, will join the NorthX team. She commented, “I am very proud when looking back at what we have achieved within the unit over the past years and look forward with great enthusiasm to build on NorthX’s position as the go-to manufacturer of advanced biologics in Northern Europe.” Helena Strigård, CEO of NorthX, said, “We are delighted to join forces with our new colleagues in Stockholm to bring new innovative treatments to tomorrow’s patients.” Thomas Eldered, Chairman of NorthX, commented, “This strategic move marks a significant milestone in our growth journey and strengthens NorthX as Sweden’s Innovation Hub. We are now able to work with ATMPs and advanced biologics, including process development and manufacture for clinical trials and commercial requirements.” ABOUT NORTHX BIOLOGICS NorthX Biologics develops and manufactures advanced biologics and has over 30 years of GMP production experience. The team provides process development and GMP manufacturing services with expertise in plasmid DNA, mRNA, proteins, cell therapy and other advanced biologics. Headquartered in the heart of Sweden, the team serves customers worldwide. In 2021 NorthX was recognised and appointed as the national innovation hub for GMP manufacture of advanced therapeutics and vaccines by the Swedish Government and Vinnova, Sweden's innovation agency. NorthX has the ambition to become a leading cell and gene therapy manufacturer and partner of choice for innovative drug development companies. For more information visit www.nxbio.com.

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Cell and Gene Therapy, AI

BenevolentAI Progresses BEN-34712 for the Potential Treatment of ALS into IND-Enabling Studies

Businesswire | June 05, 2023

BenevolentAI, a leader in the development of cutting-edge AI that accelerates biopharma discovery, announces the successful delivery of its pre-clinical candidate for the potential treatment of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), BEN-34712. BEN-34712 is an oral, potent and selective brain penetrant RARɑβ (retinoic acid receptor alpha beta) biased agonist and will now enter investigational new drug (IND)-enabling studies. Impaired retinoic acid signalling has been shown to result in neuroinflammation, oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction, all hallmarks of ALS. In preclinical studies conducted by the Company, BEN-34712 was neuroprotective in a patient-derived, disease-relevant in vitro motor neuron/iAstrocyte co-culture model, demonstrating significant efficacy in both sporadic and familial subtypes of ALS. In addition, BEN-34712 has demonstrated both central nervous system (CNS) target engagement and functional protective effects in the SOD1G93A mouse model of ALS after 50-day repeat dosing. BenevolentAI collaborated with the Sheffield Institute for Translational Neuroscience (SITraN) at the University of Sheffield on this programme, utilising their patient-derived motor neuron/iAstrocyte co-culture systems and in vivo model expertise. Anne Phelan, Chief Scientific Officer, BenevolentAI, said: “There remains a significant and urgent need for new and alternative therapies for patients with ALS. We are pleased by the promising advancement of our drug candidate, BEN-34712, towards clinical development, backed by the compelling preclinical data generated by our collaborators at SITraN.” Richard Mead, Senior Lecturer in Translational Neuroscience at SITraN, commented: "ALS patients suffering from this devastating neurodegenerative disease are in dire need of effective therapy, with the current standard of care options focusing on symptom management or offering limited clinical benefit. We believe BEN-34712 represents an exciting development in our research for a potential new treatment, particularly as it shows effectiveness in both the SOD1G93A mouse model system as well as familial and C9orf72 related ALS patient-derived cell models." About BenevolentAI BenevolentAI is a leading developer of advanced artificial intelligence technologies that unlock the value of multimodal data, surface novel insights, and accelerate biomedical discovery. Through the combined capabilities of its AI platform, its scientific expertise, and wet-lab facilities, the Company is developing an in-house drug pipeline of high-value assets. The Company is headquartered in London, with a research facility in Cambridge (UK) and a further office in New York. About ALS ALS is a progressive neurologic disorder characterised by the loss of cortical and spinal motor neurons, leading to the denervation of nerve endplates, axonal retraction and subsequent muscle atrophy. The average survival time following the initial diagnosis is around two-three years, and while there are drugs approved by the US FDA for ALS, they provide only modest benefits to patients, underwriting the urgent need for new and alternative therapies. About SITraN at the University of Sheffield The Sheffield Institute for Translational Neuroscience (SITraN) is an essential development in the fight against motor neurone disease and other common neurodegenerative disorders, including Parkinson's and dementia, as well as stroke and multiple sclerosis. SITraN has the potential to bring new treatments and new hope to patients and carers in the UK and worldwide, by significantly accelerating the pace of therapeutic development using technologies such as experimental modelling of disease, gene therapy and stem cell biology, gene expression profiling and bioinformatics analysis and modelling of the biological processes. Since its opening by Queen Elizabeth II in 2010, SITraN has grown immensely and developed into a leading global facility which is at the forefront of research and expertise.

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Cell and Gene Therapy

Mission Bio Develops Single-Cell Solution to Address Challenges in Genome Editing

PR Newswire | May 12, 2023

Mission Bio, the single-cell DNA and multi-omics company, announced today the Tapestri® Genome Editing Solution, an end-to-end product for genome editing analysis. The product will be previewed next week at the American Society of Gene and Cell Therapy Conference (ASGCT) 26th Annual Meeting. By enabling robust single-cell insights impacting both efficacy and safety, the solution will be a powerful analytical tool for developing the next generation of gene-edited therapies. The first CRISPR-modified therapy is now under regulatory review, and many similar cell-based therapies are expected to follow for multiple intractable diseases. However, genome editing can result in complex, heterogeneous mixtures of edits that make it challenging to apply a level of process control over genome-edited cell products. The Tapestri® Genome Editing Solution addresses these challenges by measuring gene editing outcomes at single-cell resolution, capturing the co-occurrence of on- and off-target edits, as well as the zygosity of edits, which conventional bulk analyses cannot. Additionally, this analysis can be completed within days by processing thousands of cells at a time without any prior selection, while conventional analytical methods require months for clonal outgrowth. An early iteration of the Tapestri® Genome Editing Solution is currently being tested by key genome editing researchers and leading cell therapy developers in academia and industry, who are providing vital feedback on the analysis. Mission Bio recently collaborated with the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in the Genome Editing Consortium, which provided qualified samples to collaborators to assess technologies that report variant size and frequency within a mixed cell population. Samantha Maragh, NIST Genome Editing Program Leader, will present results of the study at 12:00 p.m. PT on May 17 (Poster 533) at the ASGCT Annual Meeting. "We look forward to pulling back the curtain on our end-to-end Genome Editing Solution at ASGCT," said Todd Druley, MD, PhD, Chief Medical Officer at Mission Bio. "The data acquired under the Genome Editing Consortium further demonstrates the Tapestri® Platform's potential as a standard analysis tool within the genome editing community. Given the heterogeneous results of gene editing strategies, there is a great need to address both industry and regulatory genome editing concerns with a consistent and highly precise technology for accurately measuring gene editing outcomes, and our new offering will be a complete solution to do just that." About Mission Bio Mission Bio is a life sciences company that accelerates discoveries and cures for a wide range of diseases by equipping researchers with the tools they need to better measure and predict our resistance and response to new therapies. Mission Bio's multi-omics approach improves time-to-market for new therapeutics, including innovative cell and gene therapies that provide new pathways to health. Founded in 2014, Mission Bio has secured investment from Novo Growth, Cota Capital, Agilent Technologies, Mayfield Fund, and others. The company's Tapestri® Platform gives researchers around the globe the power to interrogate every molecule in a cell together, providing a comprehensive understanding of activity from a single sample. Tapestri® is the only commercialized multi-omics platform capable of analyzing DNA and protein simultaneously from the same sample at single-cell resolution. The Tapestri® Platform is being utilized by customers at leading research centers, pharmaceutical, and diagnostics companies worldwide to develop treatments and eventually cures for cancer.

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Cell and Gene Therapy, Diagnostics

NorthX Biologics, a leading Nordic development and manufacturing organisation announces acquisition of a biologics manufacturing unit from Valneva

Globenewswire | July 04, 2023

NorthX Biologics (‘NorthX’), a leading Nordic development and manufacturing organisation with a focus on advanced biologics, CGT (cell and gene therapy) and vaccines, announced today the successful acquisition of the Stockholm-based Clinical Trial Manufacturing unit from Valneva Sweden, significantly expanding capabilities. The acquisition includes the transfer of a multi-purpose facility, situated in the Stockholm life science cluster, close to Karolinska University Hospital. In addition, 30 staff members who currently operate the facility will also join NorthX. The site and staff have a long history with extensive experience of serving both Valneva internally and also working with external customers on a contract development and manufacturing basis. With expertise in mammalian expression systems and viral vectors, the capabilities complement those of NorthX’s existing business of advanced microbial based manufacturing of proteins and plasmid DNA. The acquired unit excels in process development, scale up, GMP production, quality control analytics, and quality assurance/release and is capable of working with Biosafety Level (BSL) 2/2+ and BSL 3 organisms. With this expansion, NorthX enhances its capabilities and can offer comprehensive services to a wider range of clients globally. Janet Hoogstraate, currently Managing Director of Valneva Sweden, will join the NorthX team. She commented, “I am very proud when looking back at what we have achieved within the unit over the past years and look forward with great enthusiasm to build on NorthX’s position as the go-to manufacturer of advanced biologics in Northern Europe.” Helena Strigård, CEO of NorthX, said, “We are delighted to join forces with our new colleagues in Stockholm to bring new innovative treatments to tomorrow’s patients.” Thomas Eldered, Chairman of NorthX, commented, “This strategic move marks a significant milestone in our growth journey and strengthens NorthX as Sweden’s Innovation Hub. We are now able to work with ATMPs and advanced biologics, including process development and manufacture for clinical trials and commercial requirements.” ABOUT NORTHX BIOLOGICS NorthX Biologics develops and manufactures advanced biologics and has over 30 years of GMP production experience. The team provides process development and GMP manufacturing services with expertise in plasmid DNA, mRNA, proteins, cell therapy and other advanced biologics. Headquartered in the heart of Sweden, the team serves customers worldwide. In 2021 NorthX was recognised and appointed as the national innovation hub for GMP manufacture of advanced therapeutics and vaccines by the Swedish Government and Vinnova, Sweden's innovation agency. NorthX has the ambition to become a leading cell and gene therapy manufacturer and partner of choice for innovative drug development companies. For more information visit www.nxbio.com.

Read More

Cell and Gene Therapy, AI

BenevolentAI Progresses BEN-34712 for the Potential Treatment of ALS into IND-Enabling Studies

Businesswire | June 05, 2023

BenevolentAI, a leader in the development of cutting-edge AI that accelerates biopharma discovery, announces the successful delivery of its pre-clinical candidate for the potential treatment of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), BEN-34712. BEN-34712 is an oral, potent and selective brain penetrant RARɑβ (retinoic acid receptor alpha beta) biased agonist and will now enter investigational new drug (IND)-enabling studies. Impaired retinoic acid signalling has been shown to result in neuroinflammation, oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction, all hallmarks of ALS. In preclinical studies conducted by the Company, BEN-34712 was neuroprotective in a patient-derived, disease-relevant in vitro motor neuron/iAstrocyte co-culture model, demonstrating significant efficacy in both sporadic and familial subtypes of ALS. In addition, BEN-34712 has demonstrated both central nervous system (CNS) target engagement and functional protective effects in the SOD1G93A mouse model of ALS after 50-day repeat dosing. BenevolentAI collaborated with the Sheffield Institute for Translational Neuroscience (SITraN) at the University of Sheffield on this programme, utilising their patient-derived motor neuron/iAstrocyte co-culture systems and in vivo model expertise. Anne Phelan, Chief Scientific Officer, BenevolentAI, said: “There remains a significant and urgent need for new and alternative therapies for patients with ALS. We are pleased by the promising advancement of our drug candidate, BEN-34712, towards clinical development, backed by the compelling preclinical data generated by our collaborators at SITraN.” Richard Mead, Senior Lecturer in Translational Neuroscience at SITraN, commented: "ALS patients suffering from this devastating neurodegenerative disease are in dire need of effective therapy, with the current standard of care options focusing on symptom management or offering limited clinical benefit. We believe BEN-34712 represents an exciting development in our research for a potential new treatment, particularly as it shows effectiveness in both the SOD1G93A mouse model system as well as familial and C9orf72 related ALS patient-derived cell models." About BenevolentAI BenevolentAI is a leading developer of advanced artificial intelligence technologies that unlock the value of multimodal data, surface novel insights, and accelerate biomedical discovery. Through the combined capabilities of its AI platform, its scientific expertise, and wet-lab facilities, the Company is developing an in-house drug pipeline of high-value assets. The Company is headquartered in London, with a research facility in Cambridge (UK) and a further office in New York. About ALS ALS is a progressive neurologic disorder characterised by the loss of cortical and spinal motor neurons, leading to the denervation of nerve endplates, axonal retraction and subsequent muscle atrophy. The average survival time following the initial diagnosis is around two-three years, and while there are drugs approved by the US FDA for ALS, they provide only modest benefits to patients, underwriting the urgent need for new and alternative therapies. About SITraN at the University of Sheffield The Sheffield Institute for Translational Neuroscience (SITraN) is an essential development in the fight against motor neurone disease and other common neurodegenerative disorders, including Parkinson's and dementia, as well as stroke and multiple sclerosis. SITraN has the potential to bring new treatments and new hope to patients and carers in the UK and worldwide, by significantly accelerating the pace of therapeutic development using technologies such as experimental modelling of disease, gene therapy and stem cell biology, gene expression profiling and bioinformatics analysis and modelling of the biological processes. Since its opening by Queen Elizabeth II in 2010, SITraN has grown immensely and developed into a leading global facility which is at the forefront of research and expertise.

Read More

Cell and Gene Therapy

Mission Bio Develops Single-Cell Solution to Address Challenges in Genome Editing

PR Newswire | May 12, 2023

Mission Bio, the single-cell DNA and multi-omics company, announced today the Tapestri® Genome Editing Solution, an end-to-end product for genome editing analysis. The product will be previewed next week at the American Society of Gene and Cell Therapy Conference (ASGCT) 26th Annual Meeting. By enabling robust single-cell insights impacting both efficacy and safety, the solution will be a powerful analytical tool for developing the next generation of gene-edited therapies. The first CRISPR-modified therapy is now under regulatory review, and many similar cell-based therapies are expected to follow for multiple intractable diseases. However, genome editing can result in complex, heterogeneous mixtures of edits that make it challenging to apply a level of process control over genome-edited cell products. The Tapestri® Genome Editing Solution addresses these challenges by measuring gene editing outcomes at single-cell resolution, capturing the co-occurrence of on- and off-target edits, as well as the zygosity of edits, which conventional bulk analyses cannot. Additionally, this analysis can be completed within days by processing thousands of cells at a time without any prior selection, while conventional analytical methods require months for clonal outgrowth. An early iteration of the Tapestri® Genome Editing Solution is currently being tested by key genome editing researchers and leading cell therapy developers in academia and industry, who are providing vital feedback on the analysis. Mission Bio recently collaborated with the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in the Genome Editing Consortium, which provided qualified samples to collaborators to assess technologies that report variant size and frequency within a mixed cell population. Samantha Maragh, NIST Genome Editing Program Leader, will present results of the study at 12:00 p.m. PT on May 17 (Poster 533) at the ASGCT Annual Meeting. "We look forward to pulling back the curtain on our end-to-end Genome Editing Solution at ASGCT," said Todd Druley, MD, PhD, Chief Medical Officer at Mission Bio. "The data acquired under the Genome Editing Consortium further demonstrates the Tapestri® Platform's potential as a standard analysis tool within the genome editing community. Given the heterogeneous results of gene editing strategies, there is a great need to address both industry and regulatory genome editing concerns with a consistent and highly precise technology for accurately measuring gene editing outcomes, and our new offering will be a complete solution to do just that." About Mission Bio Mission Bio is a life sciences company that accelerates discoveries and cures for a wide range of diseases by equipping researchers with the tools they need to better measure and predict our resistance and response to new therapies. Mission Bio's multi-omics approach improves time-to-market for new therapeutics, including innovative cell and gene therapies that provide new pathways to health. Founded in 2014, Mission Bio has secured investment from Novo Growth, Cota Capital, Agilent Technologies, Mayfield Fund, and others. The company's Tapestri® Platform gives researchers around the globe the power to interrogate every molecule in a cell together, providing a comprehensive understanding of activity from a single sample. Tapestri® is the only commercialized multi-omics platform capable of analyzing DNA and protein simultaneously from the same sample at single-cell resolution. The Tapestri® Platform is being utilized by customers at leading research centers, pharmaceutical, and diagnostics companies worldwide to develop treatments and eventually cures for cancer.

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