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TORONTO and SAN DIEGO (December 8, 2015) — Triphase Accelerator Corporation, a private drug development company dedicated to advancing novel compounds through Phase 2 proof-of-concept, today announced that positive results…
TORONTO and SAN DIEGO (November 19, 2015) — Triphase Accelerator Corporation, a private drug development company dedicated to advancing novel compounds through Phase 2 proof-of-concept, today announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted orphan drug designation for marizomib to treat patients with malignant glioma.
Malignant glioma is an aggressive form of brain cancer for which there is a significant unmet need in current treatments due to the disease’s poor prognosis. Triphase is evaluating marizomib, a novel and highly potent proteasome inhibitor, in combination with bevacizumab in patients with recurrent glioblastoma.
Orphan drug designation is granted by the FDA Office of Orphan Products Development (OOPD) to novel drugs or biologics that treat a rare disease or condition affecting fewer than 200,000 patients in the United States.
Prima IP co-sponsoring the Ryerson University and St. Michael’s Hospital event
That’s part of the reason why MaRS Innovation and Prima IP are sponsoring winners of an Angels’ Den competition involving the Institute for Biomedical Engineering, Science and Technology (iBEST).
iBEST is a partnership between Ryerson University and St. Michael’s Hospital that brings together Ryerson’s engineering and science strengths with St. Michael’s biomedical research and clinical expertise. The contest, which took place on June 26, 2015, riffs on the popular Dragon’s Den format.
“As a guest judge for the iBEST trainee competition this year, I reviewed a lot of thought-provoking ideas and MaRS Innovation congratulates all of the 2015 award winners,” says Dr. Fazila Seker, director of physical sciences. “Many of our portfolio technologies have their origins in this type of collaboration between researchers and medical staff, which is why we’re so excited to sponsor this competition. Fostering these types of relationships is vital to Toronto’s commercialization ecosystem.”
For the 2015 award period, MaRS Innovation will provide the competition’s winners with upfront commercialization consultation services to help shorten the time it may take for their ideas to reach the market. These services will be offered in collaboration with the technology transfer offices within St. Michael’s Hospital and the Vice-President of Research and Innovation office at Ryerson University as appropriate. In partnership with Prima IP, MaRS Innovation will also cover the initial patent application preparation and filing for the top two awardees of the iBEST event. Future award winners will receive similar support.
“Canada’s future economy depends on programs that encourage and facilitate innovation allowing Canada to remain competitive in the global marketplace and attract foreign investment,” said Marcelo König Sarkis, principal, founder and senior patent agent at Prima IP. “We are passionate in our support for Canadian inventions from the initial research phase to start-up and beyond.”
MaRS Innovation’s “model solves the two weakest points in tech transfer: the lack of dealflow and the ability to match public funding,” writes Thierry Heles in, “MaRS Innovation: A Unique Model for Tech Transfer,” for Global University Venturing.
This feature was also covered in Techopia.
The article, which includes an interview with Dr. Rafi Hofstein, president and CEO of MaRS Innovation, was published September 14, 2015.
Here’s an excerpt exploring the range of MI’s portfolio and Hofstein’s strategy for addressing technologies emerging in new areas:
In the beginning, Mars received primarily discoveries in the medical sector, but the balance has since shifted to 60% medically-oriented research and 40% for other areas. The medically-oriented discoveries, Hofstein elaborated, are a diverse set of technologies and include everything from drug development and molecular diagnostics to medical devices and healthcare IT.
The remaining 40% meanwhile cover “a smörgåsbord all the way from alternative energies and solar energy, and water reclamation to all sorts of mobile apps”.
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.”