RiboMed and Austrian Institute of Technology Partner on Epigenetic Tests for Early Lung Cancer Detection, Sub-typing and Drug Response.
RiboMed Biotechnologies, Inc. (www.ribomed.com), a company that develops epigenetic-based tests that provide improved cancer diagnosis and allow drug therapy to be personalized for the benefit of cancer patients, today announced that it has partnered with researchers at the Austrian Institute of Technology (AIT, Vienna) to commercialize their clinically validated lung cancer DNA methylation biomarkers. Lung cancer is the number-one cause of cancer deaths in both men and women in the U.S. and worldwide. The biomarkers will allow the early detection of lung cancer, as well as subtyping of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) into Adenocarcinoma or Squamous Cell Carcinoma, which are treated with different drugs. This detection and subtyping panel will not only allow physicians to diagnose the disease earlier, but will ensure that the patient receives the drug treatment that is specific for their type of cancer.
Dr. Martin Weber, Business Unit Head Molecular Diagnostics at AIT, said “Teaming up our innovative lung cancer DNA-methylation biomarker sets with RiboMed’s leading technology for epigenetic diagnostic tests is an important milestone for AIT. In our view this agreement is a first step to a successful commercialization of our biomarkers together with a partner that perfectly complements our own core competencies”. RiboMed has developed both a proprietary affinity protein, MethylMagnet®, to separate methylated and unmethylated DNA and an extremely sensitive signal generation process, Abscription® (Abortive Transcription) for detection. It is the combination of these two technologies in MethylMeter® assays that allows RiboMed to quantitatively measure DNA methylation levels on multiple genes, even with small
samples containing damaged DNA.
AIT’s detection and subtyping panel of DNA methylation biomarkers will be coupled with additional DNA methylation biomarkers being validated by RiboMed that will predict the probability of the patient’s response to the most common drugs used to treat lung cancer.
“By coupling AIT’s diagnostic and subtyping biomarkers with other biomarkers that predict drug response, we will provide physicians with a single test with both diagnostic and theranostic information” noted RiboMed CEO Dr. Michelle Hanna. “The discovery and development of biomarkers tests for drug response is becoming an essential component of cancer treatment. We are very excited to partner with AIT to develop and commercialize this ground-breaking lung cancer test.”
The test will be developed and offered through the CLIA-certified RiboMed Clinical Services Laboratory in Carlsbad, CA.
RiboMed’s proprietary MethylMeter® Abscription-based assays provide extremely sensitive, accurate and quantitative measurement of the extent of methylation of the regulatory regions of different genes. They work well in serum, saliva, sputum, urine and even with FFPE samples, making them the ideal choice for oncology-based clinical diagnostic, prognostic, and theranostic epigenetic tests. RiboMed’s first prognostic
test for brain cancer, launched in 2012, quantitatively measures the methylation levels of 8 genes from very small slices of FFPE tumor tissue with extremely low failure rates, results that were unobtainable with conventional bisulfite-based PCR, enzymatic, and sequencing methods.
Survival rates for lung cancer are lower than those for most cancers, with an overall five-year survival rate of only 16% compared to 65% for colon cancer and over 99% for prostate cancer. In up to 25% of people who get lung cancer, the cancer is first discovered on a routine chest X-ray or CT scan as a small mass, by which time, the cancer has often spread. Earlier detection, coupled with information on the correct drug treatment would be a powerful life-saving tool for physicians.
RiboMed Biotechnologies (www.ribomed.com) is a molecular diagnostic company with a focus on Epigenetic Diagnostics and Theranostics in Oncology. The Company develops and provides products, services, and tests for disease screening, diagnostics, theranostics, post‐treatment monitoring, and drug development utilizing its proprietary and patented technology platforms for biomarker detection (Abscription) and methylated DNA isolation and quantification (MethylMagnet® and MethylMeter®).
RiboMed Clinical Services Laboratory (RCSL), a fully compliant CLIA certified division, offers sensitive and quantitative DNA Methylation profiling clinical assay development services which provide reliable results even with FFPE tissues. RiboMed has over 10 issued patents for the use of Abscription for biomarker detection, including RNA, protein, SNPs and other DNA alterations in addition to DNA methylation.
The Austrian Institute of Technology (www.ait.ac.at) is Austria´s largest non-university research institute with a European format and takes an important role in the field of innovation. One of its research areas, Molecular Diagnostics, is focused on the identification of effective ways for early diagnosis of diabetes, cancer and types of fibrosis. AIT provides scientific support and technologies to national and international
For more information, contact:
Michelle Hanna, Ph.D.
CEO & Scientific Director