On July 19, 2022, NurExone Biologic Inc. (TSXV: NRX) (formerly, EnerSpar Corp.), a biopharmaceutical company developing biologically-guided exosome therapy for patients with traumatic spinal injuries and other central nervous system (“CNS”) indications, announced the signing of a Material Transfer Agreement dated July 18th, 2022 with Yissum Research Development Company of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem Ltd. (“Yissum”), the wholly-owned subsidiary and technology transfer company of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. The Agreement relates to the transfer of certain biological, chemical, and other tangible materials (the “Materials”) to Yissum for use by Professor Tal Burstyn-Cohen, PhD, and her team at the Hebrew University. Professor Burstyn-Cohen is an experienced researcher at the Hebrew University and leader of the Burstyn-Cohen Lab which researches molecular and cellular mechanisms that underlie tissue homeostasis in health.
On July 20, 2022, the American Chemical Society (ACS) announced that it is honoring researchers and companies for developing products that have led to significant advancements in health and medicine and other consumer applications. The 2022 winners will be inducted into the Heroes of Chemistry scientific hall of fame, which ACS has sponsored annually since 1996.
On July 18, 2022, Cells for Cells (“C4C”), a clinical-stage biotech company pioneering allogeneic stem cell and stem-cells-derived therapeutics for high-impact chronic diseases, announced a 6-month follow-up of the ground-breaking clinical data from the first-ever patient dosed with an exosome-produced therapy for osteoarthritis. The results were made public at an extracellular vesicles (EVs) signature series during the ISCT (International Society for Cell & Gene Therapy) annual meeting in San Francisco and the ISEV (International Society for Extracellular Vesicles) meeting in Lyon, France. Dr. Maroun Khoury, Chief Scientific Officer of C4C, presented the results of the first trial evaluating the safety and efficacy of exosome biotherapeutics in joint disease. This study reported an unprecedented WOMAC score reduction six months after a single administration of XO-101, C4C’s flagship exosome therapy derived from mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs).
Brain metastasis is one of the most common causes of cancer-related deaths and occurs very frequently in patients with advanced melanoma. Although new immunotherapies are effective in some patients with melanoma brain metastases, little is known about the reasons for melanoma’s spread to the brain and the lower response rates to many therapies. Columbia researchers have now completed one of the most comprehensive studies of the cells inside melanoma brain metastases, uncovering details that could spur the development of a new generation of therapies.
People with gut disorders may be at greater risk of developing Alzheimer’s Disease (AD). A world-first Edith Cowan University (ECU) (Western Australia) study has confirmed the link between the two, which could lead to earlier detection and new potential treatments. AD destroys memory and thinking ability and is the most prevalent form of dementia. It has no known curative treatments and is expected to affect more than 82 million people and cost US $2 trillion by 2030. Previous observational studies have suggested a relationship between AD and gastrointestinal tract disorders, but what underpins these relationships had been unclear–until now. ECU’s Centre for Precision Health has now provided new insights into these relationships by confirming a genetic link between AD and multiple gut disorders.
The scientific journal Communications Biology, belonging to the Springer-Nature Group, has just published an open-access article paper entitled “Yellow Fever Surveillance Suggests Zoonotic And Anthroponotic Emergent Potential,” describing research conducted by the Biogeography, Diversity, and Preservation Group of the Department of Animal Biology of the University of Malaga (UMA) in Spain that inquires into the …
The American Society for Virology 2022 annual meeting is being held in Madison, Wisconsin July 16-20. The platinum sponsors of this meeting are the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Promega. The silver sponsor is Gilead. Bronze sponsors include 10X Genomics, Burroughs Wellcome Fund, and GSK. Additional sponsors include Moderna, Pfizer, Takeda, and New England BioLabs. Registration for in-person or virtual attendance can be done here.
On July 5, 2022, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), and Codiak BioSciences (NASDAQ: CDAK) announced the latest funding award under CEPI’s US $200m programme to advance the development of vaccines that provide broad protection against SARS-CoV-2 (including its variants) and other Betacoronaviruses. CEPI will provide seed funding of up to US $2.5 million to Codiak–a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA–to continue the advancement of vaccine candidates from its pan Betacoronavirus program through preclinical studies. Codiak’s proprietary exoVACC™ platform leverages engineered exosomes–naturally occurring, extracellular nanoparticle vesicles–to precisely control antigen display on the surface or in the lumen, in order to deliver antigens, adjuvants, and immunomodulators selectively to antigen-presenting cells to maximize immune response. Codiak’s pan Betacoronavirus vaccine construct carries the receptor-binding domain (RBD) protein of both SARS-CoV-1 and SARS-CoV-2 at high density on the surface of the exosome, combined with structurally constrained, highly conserved T-cell antigens expressed in the lumen, and stable loading of a STING agonist (STING is acronym for “stimulator of interferon genes”). This design closely resembles the natural viral structures, and these engineered exosomes stimulate a broad immune response comprising both antibody- and T-cell-mediated immunity.