Amyris | October 23, 2020
Amyris, Inc. (Nasdaq: AMRS), a leading synthetic biotechnology company in Clean Health and Beauty markets through its consumer brands, and a top supplier of sustainable and natural ingredients, today announced the signing of a Collaboration Agreement and License Agreement with the Infectious Disease Research Institute (IDRI) to advance a novel ribonucleic acid (RNA) vaccine platform, including accelerating the development of a COVID-19 vaccine. The collaboration will combine IDRI's RNA vaccine platform, including IDRI's proprietary nanostructured lipid carrier (NLC) platform, with Amyris's semi-synthetic squalene. This has the potential to offer differentiated advantages over other RNA vaccines, including superior scalability, efficacy, and sustainability. Amyris will co-own intellectual property developed to create the COVID-19 vaccine, any rights in any combination of IDRI materials and Amyris squalene, the pre-clinical and Phase I clinical trial data, and the Clinical Study Report.
CELL AND GENE THERAPY
Curi Bio Inc. | December 30, 2021
Curi Bio Inc., a leading developer of human stem cell-based platforms for drug discovery, announced the second closing of a $10 million oversubscribed Series A financing. New investors include UTC Investment and DS Asset Management, joining current Curi Bio investor and Series A lead Dynamk Capital. The investment will be used to scale Curi’s existing business and accelerate the development of its innovative engineered tissue analysis platforms, including its Mantarray™ platform.
“Curi Bio is thrilled to partner with the distinguished teams at UTC Investment, DS Asset Management, and Dynamk Capital to fuel our next stage of growth. To discover new therapies requires human-relevant disease models. Curi is working to close the gap between preclinical results and clinical outcomes, not only in small molecule discovery, but also in frontier areas like next-generation genetic medicines and cell therapies.”
Michael Cho, JD, CEO of Curi Bio
With costs to develop a single new medicine now exceeding $2Bn, the need for more human-relevant disease models to improve translational efficiency in the drug development process has never been greater. Curi’s core platform – the Curi Engine™ – integrates human stem cells, tissue specific biosystems, and A.I./M.L.-enabled data analysis to accelerate the discovery and development of new therapeutics. With this three-pronged strategy — human cells, systems and data — Curi is rapidly becoming a market leader in creating high-fidelity models of human diseases for drug discovery, especially for striated muscle, including cardiac and skeletal muscle, and neuromuscular models.
“Curi Bio’s technology platforms create significant value for pharma and biotech companies by accelerating discovery timelines and increasing the chances of success for new therapies in development,” said Dr. Gustavo Mahler, Managing Partner, Dynamk Capital. “We look forward to strong growth in Curi Bio’s customer portfolio.”
Curi Bio’s core technologies and products include NanoSurface™ Plates for structural maturation, Cytostretcher™ cell-stretching instruments, and the Mantarray platform for contractility analysis. The Mantarray platform enables researchers to generate and analyze 3D engineered human muscle tissues, providing clinically relevant functional readouts, and reducing reliance on poorly predictive animal models. Curi also offers a suite of customized research services utilizing the Curi Engine, including new assay and model development and phenotypic screening. Curi Bio counts all of the top-ten global pharmaceutical companies among its clients, customers, and partners.
About Curi Bio
Curi Bio’s preclinical discovery platform combines human stem cells, systems, and data to accelerate the discovery of new medicines. The Curi Engine is a seamless, bioengineered platform that integrates human iPSC-derived cell models, tissue-specific biosystems, and A.I./M.L.-enabled phenotypic screening data. Curi’s suite of human stem cell-based products and services enable scientists to build more mature and predictive human iPSC-derived tissues—with a focus on cardiac, musculoskeletal, and neuromuscular models—for the discovery, safety testing, and efficacy testing of new drugs in development. The company’s proprietary technologies are supported by over 100 publications and 19 patents. By offering drug developers an integrated preclinical platform comprising highly predictive human stem cell models to generate clinically-relevant data, Curi is closing the gap between preclinical data and human results, accelerating the discovery and development of safer, more effective medicines.
Lucid Diagnostics | March 25, 2022
Lucid Diagnostics Inc., a commercial-stage cancer prevention diagnostics company and a majority-owned subsidiary of PAVmed Inc, announced that investigators at the Louis Stokes Cleveland Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center had enrolled their first patient in a Department of Defense ("DoD")- Katarina B. Greer, M.D., an associate professor of medicine at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in Cleveland, is the lead investigator of the research. Lucid supplies the study with EsoCheck® Esophageal Cell Collection Devices and will conduct EsoGuard testing on the obtained samples.
We are proud to be partnering with Dr. Greer and the Cleveland VA on this important investigator-initiated clinical study, The study will add important clinical evidence on the impact of EsoGuard in enhancing early detection of esophageal precancer to prevent esophageal cancer deaths by reserving endoscopy for those with a positive EsoGuard test.”
Lishan Aklog, M.D., Lucid’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.
Despite strong clinical practice guideline recommendations, endoscopy has had limited success as a widespread screening tool for Barrett’s Esophagus (BE), a precursor for esophageal adenocarcinoma, a highly lethal form of esophageal cancer, We hope to demonstrate that a strategy that incorporates initial office-based non-endoscopic testing of at-risk patients with EsoGuard improves endoscopy yield and overall cost-effectiveness.”
Only around 10% of at-risk GERD patients advised for esophageal precancer (BE) screening undergo traditional, invasive upper gastrointestinal endoscopy (EGD). Over 80% of people who undergo EGD screening have a negative result, subjecting the overwhelming majority of these patients to a complicated, invasive, expensive, and inconvenient surgery requiring anesthesia in a specialist procedure center or hospital. EsoGuard has been demonstrated to be 90% sensitive and specific for identifying esophageal precancer and cancer when done on EsoCheck samples, potentially removing the bulk of these negative EGDs, benefiting patients, providers, and the healthcare system.
The trial will include up to 100 Cleveland VA patients who meet the American College of Gastroenterology's criteria for esophageal pre-cancer screening. The research compares two screening strategies: (1) regular EGD screening; and (2) EsoGuard testing followed by EGD exclusively in individuals with a positive EsoGuard result. The trial will determine if utilizing EsoGuard to triage patients to EGD improves overall BE screening rates and decreases the number of EGDs with negative screening results. Additionally, the research will analyze the economic implications for the VA system of these two options.