Pharma Focus Asia

Precision Therapeutics Subsidiary, TumorGenesis, Announces License Agreement with SyntArray, LLC

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Precision Therapeutics Inc., formerly Skyline Medical, announced that its wholly owned subsidiary, TumorGenesis Inc., has secured a license agreement with SyntArray LLC. This license agreement will advance the Company’s strategic plan to develop the next generation of patient derived (“PDx”) tumor models for precision cancer therapy and drug development by granting it access to SyntArray’s targeted peptide cell capture technology.

TumorGenesis is developing a new approach to growing tumor models in the laboratory that is faster, less costly and more closely mimics the characteristics of the patient’s tumor, than the traditional PDx animal models that are currently on the market. TumorGenesis’ innovative approach is comprised of three key steps: first, the tumor cells from the patient tumor biopsy are tagged using peptides targeted to the patient’s specific cancer cells; second, the tags adhere the cells to a 3D biomimetic support in the well of a standard 96 well microplate; and third, the tumor cells are grown in the 3D culture system until ready for testing.

The SyntArray technology provides a vital step in rapidly identifying the key peptide ligands that cause the cells to attach to the surface of a microplate and grow. The SyntArray technology ensures that TumorGenesis is able to capture and grow all the different types of cancer cells in the laboratory to closely mimic the tumor inside the patient’s body for more relevant drug response testing.

Dr. Carl Schwartz, Chief Executive Officer of Precision Therapeutics, commented, “We are executing on our strategy to participate in the growth of the rapidly emerging precision medicine market by positioning the Company as an invaluable partner to Pharma companies as they develop personalized approaches to diagnosing and treating cancers. Securing this agreement to license the SyntArray technology is expected to further our plans to develop the next generation of patient derived tumor models. These patient-derived tumor models will be designed to ‘fool’ the cancer cells into thinking they are still in the patient’s body. Offering an external, structured environment that more closely mimics the characteristics of the patient’s tumor is expected to generate a more effective response when testing drugs for personalized therapy and in the development of new drugs, compared with the costlier, and less effective, animal models that are currently used in the clinical development of cancer therapies.”

Testing of patient tumors using the TumorGenesis approach is expected to:
a) Provide a personalized therapy protocol for a patient,
b) Provide high-quality data on cancer tumors for a platform based on the D-CHIP Artificial Intelligence (AI) platform of Helomics Corporation, pursuant to Precision Therapeutics’ partnership with Helomics, and
c) Drive partnerships with Pharma companies for the development of new therapies, generating revenues for Precision Therapeutics.

Testing of the TumorGenesis PDx tumors will take place in collaboration with Helomics. The Company is also currently in negotiations with several other medical technology companies to license their technologies and expects to announce these potential agreements when they are finalized.

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