Canadian innovation will give patients affordable, non-invasive, accurate test for cancer or infectious diseases; R&D team to remain in Toronto discovery district TORONTO and SAN FRANCISCO (May 3, 2016) —…
"Closely-held Xagenic plans to conduct beta studies this year, in advance of a major chlamydia and gonorrhea clinical trial, with its rapid X1 molecular diagnostic testing system in preparation for…
CQDM and MaRS Innovation investing in new Encycle project to determine rules for making peptide drugs orally bioavailable
PHILADELPHIA (June 16, 2015) — FiercePharma has predicted that the pharmaceutical industry stands to lose $44 billion in drugs going off patent in 2015. The industry is searching for new therapeutics to replenish their pipelines while tackling existing and new drug receptor targets within the cell, improve patient care and lower administrative costs. In this context, drugs that can be orally swallowed, known as orally-bioavailable drugs, are in great demand.
Encycle Therapeutics Inc., a biotechnology company founded by Dr. Andrei Yudin of the University of Toronto in partnership with MaRS Innovation, is a Canadian start-up emerging as a market leader in finding orally-bioavailable molecules. Today, the company announced $840,000 in funding from CQDM and MaRS Innovation to generate a better understanding of the chemical properties required to make small peptide-like molecules, which Encycle calls nacellins, orally bioavailable.
This funding, generated through MaRS Innovation’s strategic partnerships programs with Pfizer Inc. and GSK, and CQDM’s global membership program with Pfizer Inc. and Merck, brings Encycle’s total funding to approximately $4 million, including an earlier investment in 2011 from Ontario Centres of Excellence.
Dr. Diane Gosselin, president and CEO of CQDM, together with Dr. Raphael (Rafi) Hofstein, president and CEO of MaRS Innovation, made the announcement this morning at the 2015 BIO International Convention in the presence of Dr. Reza Moridi, Ontario Minister of Research and Innovation and Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities, and Dr. Gaétan Barrette, Quebec Minister of Health and Social Services.
“Encycle’s proprietary cyclized peptides are very different from other types of therapeutics and should enable us to target many of the proteins that are currently regarded as undruggable,” says Dr. Jeffrey Coull, Encycle’s president and CEO. “Our research suggests that, due to their unique properties, it’s easier for our peptides to cross cell membranes than it is for other types, allowing them to be taken orally and access proteins on the inside of a cell. Working on this project together with Pfizer and Merck through CQDM, as well as Pfizer and GSK through MaRS Innovation, we now wish to develop a more precise understanding of the relationship between their structure and composition, and the ability to be delivered orally.”
“When Binh Nguyen, then a graduate student in biomedical engineering at the University of Toronto, was working in the renal engineering department of a local hospital, he was struck by what he felt was a suboptimal setup for dialysis treatment,” writes Jordana Dixon in “Health startup helps patients become more independent,” for the Globe and Mail on April 13, 2015.
eQOL Inc. is a University of Toronto and MaRS Innovation start-up company that participated in and graduated from the University of Toronto Early-Stage Technology (UTEST) program’s second cohort.
UTEST is currently accepting applications for its fourth cohort.
Here’s an excerpt from the article:
Taking these complications into consideration, Mr. Nguyen envisioned an all-encompassing lateral system that would optimize the process of in-home dialysis utilizing technology, but most importantly, improving patient experience.
Council members include MI’s Raphael Hofstein and MI Board Chair Dr. Robert Bell
On November 20, the Government of Ontario launched the Ontario Health Innovation Council to support health innovation in Ontario. Dr. Raphael Hofstein, president and CEO of MaRS Innovation, was named to the council.
By becoming a member of the Council, Hofstein will assist in identifying evidence-based opportunities in Ontario’s healthcare space and advancing them into practice on a global scale.
VitalHub is building on its success in redefining how doctors access patient data by partnering with Box, which announced 13 new partnerships with companies, including VitalHub.
Together, their technology will work across web and mobile devices to help healthcare organizations work with, share and collaborate using information.
Invented at Toronto’s Mount Sinai Hospital in the IT Department, VitalHub was created to effectively manage patient data through a platform allowing clinicians to rapidly access comprehensive, relevant patient information gathered from multiple disparate clinical information systems.
MI start-up ApneaDx Inc. among program’s first round of participants
The first three companies selected to participate in the MaRS EXCITE program aim to improve outcomes for breast cancer, sleep apnea and drug-resistant hypertension.
The Excellence in Clinical Innovation and Technology Evaluation (EXCITE) initiative helps companies accelerate the adoption and reimbursement of innovative health technologies through a single, harmonized, pre-market, evidence-based process.
EXCITE has selected ApneaDx Inc., Medtronic of Canada Ltd. and Rna Diagnostics Inc. as the program’s initial participants.
VitalHub Chart has been named to Apple’s list of top 80 apps for doctors, nurses, patients and healthcare professionals in the “EMR and patient monitoring” category.
Here’s a description of the app, which is made by Toronto-based VitalHub Corp., from the Apple list curators:
“VitalHub Chart puts patient data at your fingertips. You can access the information you need any time, anywhere there is WiFi or cellular service. No more waiting for a free desktop, hunting for a workstation on wheels, or carrying printouts on rounds.”
Sleep apnea is a medical disorder that is gaining increasing recognition as a major health issue. It is estimated that six to eight per cent of the world’s population suffer from the disease, but 85 per cent are undiagnosed.
Undiagnosed sleep apnea is estimated to cause $3.4 billion in additional medical costs in the US.
Provincial Investment Supports Commercialization of Leading-Edge Molecular Diagnostic Screening Technology TORONTO (July 26, 2011) — Xagenic Inc., one of MaRS Innovation’s (MI) portfolio spin-off companies, was awarded $1 million in…