KalGene Pharmaceuticals, a developer of a prognostic marker and companion therapeutic that specifically targets aggressive cancers, has formed a multi-stage and multi-year collaboration with the Center for Imaging Technology Commercialization (CIMTEC), Sunnybrook Research Institute (SRI) and the Ontario Cancer Biomarker Network (OCBN) at Queen's University.
Dr. Nathan Yoganathan, president and chief scientific officer at KalGene, said, “We are developing precision medicine tools that provide more effective cancer therapeutics that also will significantly alleviate patient suffering during treatment and improve overall quality of life."
Precision medicine seeks to predict which patients will respond to a particular therapy in advance of treatment. This allows physicians to prescribe treatment only to the individuals most likely to benefit.
KalGene has several projects in its pipeline, ranging from early stage research to clinical trials. The current project focuses on metastatic disease, an unmet medical need for breast, colon and brain cancer. KalGene's principals, Dr. John Gillard and Yoganathan, believe they have a unique solution and are enlisting the experience of Canadian and international partners.
CIMTEC is providing project management services and coordinating research laboratories in multiple cities. In addition, its engineers are creating digital pathology algorithms to quantify new biomarkers.
Sunnybrook Research Institute's Biomarker Imaging Research Laboratory (BIRL) is providing experience in optimizing multiplexed immunohistochemistry imaging and characterizing the structure and function of specific antibodies to develop a therapeutic that targets aggressive cancers.
OCBN, through its laboratory operations at Queen's University under the direction of Dr. Harriet Feilotter, is further contributing to the optimization of IHC staining and providing avenues for clinical review.