RNA-protein network may explain why melanoma grows more

Phys.org | October 29, 2018

With five-year survival rates being around 30 percent for patients with distant metastatic disease, cutaneous melanoma is the leading cause of skin cancer-related deaths. The major causes of the low survival rate for melanoma patients are the limited number of options for patients lacking the BRAF mutation and the intrinsic and acquired resistance to existing therapies. It is therefore essential to develop new therapeutic strategies to eradicate resistant cells and/or target patients irrespective of their driver mutations. 
A collaboration led by scientists from KU Leuven, Belgium, with Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology (TUAT), Japan, revealed a new way to fight melanoma. They report that a melanoma-specific long non-coding RNA, named SAMMSON, interacts with the protein CARF to properly coordinate protein synthesis in both the cytosol and mitochondria of melanoma cells. This mechanism ensures the maintenance of proteostasis during cell growth, thus avoiding the induction of cell death.

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MEDICAL

BioCina announces opening of new GMP plasmid DNA manufacturing suite

BioCina | June 14, 2022

BioCina, a leading contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) today announced that the company has expanded its CDMO service offering to include the manufacture of plasmid DNA (pDNA) in a new dedicated GMP suite. The suite is equipped with up to 300 L single use fermentation capacity and suitably scaled downstream processing equipment. To complement GMP manufacturing, a broad range of analytical methods have been developed to support in-process, release and stability testing of pDNA products. This is a very important and timely addition that will best enable BioCina to work with its industry partners to further develop RNA vaccines and therapeutics as well as cell and gene therapies. BioCina's decision to expand its service offering into pDNA development and manufacturing was driven by the global increase in demand for GMP grade pDNA fueled by the exponential growth in vaccines and therapies on the RNA platform as well as strong growth in the cell and gene therapy markets. These factors, combined with the CDMO industry's dearth of capacity and access to high-quality cGMP pDNA manufacturing expertise, made this a clear path forward underscored by BioCina's depth of experience in microbial manufacturing. With our extremely strong history of quality in manufacturing, an exemplary regulatory inspection history, and our customer-centric business approach, BioCina is in a strong position to add significant value to companies working in the RNA and gene and cell therapy space that are struggling to find reliable and collaborative outsourcing partners. The addition of GMP pDNA services is a natural extension of our existing traditional biologics offering and provides another avenue for growth by supporting the development and manufacturing of these innovative vaccines and therapies." Ian Wisenberg, Chief Executive Officer of BioCina. With its well established expertise in the production of microbial derived biologics, BioCina is ideally suited to address the increasing global demand for GMP plasmid DNA. Whether used as a raw material in the production of viral vectors or mRNA vaccines, or as the active ingredient for plasmid gene therapy or DNA vaccines, we look forward to partnering with innovators to assist in progressing many exciting therapies." BioCina Chairman, Rick Hancock. About BioCina BioCina Pty Ltd. is a multi-product biologics contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO), focused on the development and cGMP manufacture of microbial-based biological pharmaceuticals, including proteins, pDNA, mRNA, vaccines and biosimilars, from early development through to commercialization. The BioCina Adelaide facility, formerly the Pfizer/Hospira plant, has a physical footprint of almost 60,000 ft2 for GMP manufacturing, process development, warehouse, and administration. The team has over 35 years of experience and extensive capabilities in microbial process development and manufacturing, with expertise from early process development to commercial manufacturing. BioCina has an enviable history manufacturing biological products approved for commercial use by the US-FDA, EMA and Health Canada, including the manufacturing of API for use in all stages of clinical trials. Licensed for GMP manufacture by the Australian Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), BioCina is the only GMP manufacturing facility of its kind in Australia that has successfully passed a US-FDA inspection. BioCina is a Bridgewest Group portfolio company.

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MEDTECH

Enveric Biosciences Announces Reverse Stock Split

Enveric Biosciences | July 15, 2022

Enveric Biosciences, Inc. a neuroscience-focused biotechnology company developing next-generation, psychedelic-inspired mental health medicines, announced that it intends to effect a reverse stock split of its common stock at a ratio of 1 post-split share for every 50 pre-split shares. The reverse stock split will become effective at 4:05 p.m., New York time, on Thursday, July 14, 2022. Enveric’s common stock will continue to be traded on the Nasdaq Capital Market under the symbol “ENVB” and will begin trading on a split-adjusted basis when the market opens on Friday, July 15, 2022. At a special meeting of stockholders held on July 14, 2022, Enveric’s stockholders granted the Company’s Board of Directors the discretion to effect a reverse stock split of Enveric’s common stock through an amendment to its Amended and Restated Certificate of Incorporation, as amended, at a ratio of not less than 1-for-10 and not more than 1-for-100, such ratio to be determined by the Company’s Board of Directors. At the effective time of the reverse stock split, every 50 shares of Enveric’s issued and outstanding common stock will be converted automatically into one issued and outstanding share of common stock without any change in the par value per share. Stockholders holding shares through a brokerage account will have their shares automatically adjusted to reflect the 1-for-50 reverse stock split. It is not necessary for stockholders holding shares of the Company’s common stock in certificated form to exchange their existing stock certificates for new stock certificates of the Company in connection with the reverse stock split, although stockholders may do so if they wish. The reverse stock split will affect all stockholders uniformly and will not alter any stockholder’s percentage interest in the Company’s equity, except to the extent that the reverse stock split would result in a stockholder owning a fractional share. Any fractional share of a stockholder resulting from the reverse stock split will be rounded up to the nearest whole number of shares. The reverse stock split will reduce the number of shares of Enveric’s common stock outstanding from 52,684,548 shares to approximately 1,053,691 shares. Proportional adjustments will be made to the number of shares of Enveric’s common stock issuable upon exercise or conversion of Enveric’s equity awards and warrants, as well as the applicable exercise price. Stockholders whose shares are held in brokerage accounts should direct any questions concerning the reverse stock split to their broker. All stockholders of record may direct questions to the Company’s transfer agent, American Stock Transfer & Trust Company, LLC, at 1-877-248-6417 or 1-718-921-8317. About Enveric Biosciences Enveric Biosciences, Inc. is a neuroscience-focused pharmaceutical company developing next-generation, psychedelic-inspired mental health medicines. Enveric’s robust pipeline supports drug development from the clinic to commercialization aimed to help millions of patients in need around the world suffering from conditions that include cancer-related distress, PTSD and more.

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RESEARCH

Lunaphore and Indica Labs announce partnership to provide complete technology solution for spatial biology and image analysis

Indica Labs | May 13, 2022

Lunaphore, a Swiss life sciences company developing technology to enable spatial biology in every laboratory, and Indica Labs, a leading provider of computational pathology software and services, today announced a partnership to co-market an end-to-end solution that combines Lunaphore's flagship COMET™ spatial biology platform and Indica's HALO® and HALO AI™ digital pathology image analysis software. Lunaphore's COMET™ platform provides superior multiplex staining and image acquisition capabilities facilitating the automated detection of up to 40 separate spatial markers per tissue slide without human intervention. In contrast to other spatial biology solutions, COMET™ works with off-the-shelf, label-free antibodies and is designed to provide researchers with flexibility for their workflow. COMET™ has a wide range of research applications across immuno-oncology, neuroscience, and infectious diseases. Indica Labs' industry-leading HALO® and HALO AITM software enable fast, AI-based quantitative analysis of whole slide images. In combination with the COMET™ platform, the HALO Highplex FL module allows researchers to quantify an unlimited number of fluorescent markers and cell phenotypes defined by their biomarker expression. HALO Spatial Analysis and HALO AI deep learning classifiers are used in combination with Highplex FL to explore the distribution and spatial relationships between different cell phenotypes in the context of the tissue, such as tumor and immune cells. This additional spatial data is particularly important in immuno-oncology and neuroscience disease research. We are excited to partner with Lunaphore to address the growing needs of our research customers for highly multiplexed assays, Combining Lunaphore's superior multiplexing technologies upstream with our powerful AI-based analysis downstream, together we provide a streamlined workflow for high dimensional imaging and image analysis." Steven Hashagen, CEO of Indica Labs. Our partnership with Indica Labs is another key aspect of our strategy to combine our COMET™ technology with industry-leading image analysis technologies, Indica Labs' solutions are used by a large set of researchers in the field, thanks to their ease of use and analysis capabilities. Combining Indica's solutions with the class-leading capabilities of COMET™ will help us pursue our shared goal of making tissue image analysis easier and more accessible to labs around the world." Deborah Heintze, Chief Marketing Officer of Lunaphore. About Lunaphore Lunaphore Technologies S.A. is a Swiss company born in 2014 with the vision of enabling spatial biology in every laboratory. Lunaphore has developed a game-changing chip technology which can extract spatial proteomic and genomic data from tumors and transform any simple assay into multiplex spatial biology without complexity. Lunaphore empowers researchers to push the boundaries of research to ultimately develop the next generation personalized therapies. About Indica Labs Indica Labs is the world's leading provider of computational pathology software and image analysis services. Our flagship HALO® and HALO AI™ platform facilitates quantitative evaluation of digital pathology images. HALO Link™ facilitates research-focused image management and collaboration while HALO AP® enables collaborative clinical case review. Our Pharma Services team leverages all our image analysis platforms to partner with you to advance tissue-based research, clinical trials, and diagnostics.

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MEDICAL

Slingshot Biosciences, Inc. Partners With Cambridge Bioscience to Distribute Synthetic Cells Throughout United Kingdom and Ireland

Slingshot | June 16, 2022

SLINGSHOT BIOSCIENCES, INC. the makers of synthetic cells that bring consistent precision and accurate control to replace inconsistent blood and tissue controls for use in flow cytometry and other biotech markets, today announced they have extended their distribution channel through a new agreement with Cambridge Bioscience, a UK-based specialist distributor of life science research tools. The agreement entitles Cambridge Bioscience to the right to distribute and resell Slingshot Bio’s products in the United Kingdom and Ireland. Through Cambridge Bioscience’s network of customers, Slingshot Bio will be able to establish its presence in the United Kingdom and Ireland market with the well-established presence and expertise of Cambridge Bioscience which has been selling into flow cytometry for many years. Cambridge Bioscience’s network will provide us with the market penetration needed to reach our full sales potential. Slingshot Biosciences has considered many distribution partners and we are confident that Cambridge Bioscience’s extensive knowledge in the field, prominent presence, and large customer base will help us leverage our position in the flow cytometry market.” Jeffrey Kim, CEO & Founder. About Slingshot Biosciences, Inc. Founded in 2012, Slingshot Biosciences is a fast-growing life sciences company with a platform technology and paradigm-shifting mission to make synthetic cells the gold standard for all cell-based applications—including diagnostics, and adoptive cell therapy development and instrument calibration.

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