Cambridge, MA (PRWEB) March 08, 2016
CheckPoint Sciences, Inc., and the Icahn Institute for Genomics and Multiscale Biology at Mount Sinai have established a collaboration that makes state-of-the-art genomics and bioinformatics services available to pharmaceutical companies to facilitate the development and commercialization of diagnostics for personalized cancer immunotherapy treatments. The rapidly-developing field of cancer immunotherapy offers tremendous promise, but it is hampered by high costs and increasing numbers and combinations of cancer immunotherapies under development. Moreover, a significant number of patients do not respond favorably to immunotherapy treatment. Healthcare professionals urgently need personalized immunotherapy diagnostic tests that can help them determine which cancer patients could benefit from a specific immunotherapy and which patients would not benefit from it, or could even be harmed by it.
The new collaboration is led by CheckPoint Sciences’ Science Advisory Board, which includes several of the foremost cancer immunotherapy experts from The Tisch Cancer Institute and the Icahn Institute at Mount Sinai. The Icahn Institute has one of the world’s leading genetics and genomic labs, providing state-of-the-art next generation sequencing and supercomputer-based bioinformatics services. CheckPoint Sciences has developed unique, patent-pending blood-based pre- and post-treatment checkpoint immunotherapy response-predictive biomarkers, which it is bringing to the collaboration.
Dr. William Oh, Chief of the Division of Hematology and Medical Oncology at Mount Sinai Hospital and Chairman of the CheckPoint Sciences Scientific Advisory Board, said “Immunotherapy offers new hope for patients with melanoma, lung cancer and potentially many other types of cancers. Only a limited number of cancer patients respond to immunotherapy, however, and an urgent clinical need exists for biomarkers that can effectively guide treatment decisions.” Medical professionals are looking to biomarkers to answer the most critical treatment questions for cancer patients and their loved ones, such as
- Which patients will benefit from checkpoint inhibitors?
- Which patients need combination immunotherapies?
- Which combination of therapies is best for an individual patient?
- Is the immunotherapy still working over time?
- Is the patient responding to a therapeutic cancer vaccine?
Karl G. Wassmann, President of CheckPoint Sciences, said “Biomarkers that are derived from simple blood draws and that can predict in real time the response of individual patients to cancer immunotherapy are the ‘Holy Grail’ of personalized immunotherapy.” Eric Schadt, PhD, the Founding Director of the Icahn Institute at Mount Sinai, added “The combination of the Icahn Institute’s advanced capabilities and CheckPoint Sciences’ robust blood-based biomarkers provides pharmaceutical companies with a comprehensive suite of immunotherapy biomarkers, capabilities and services to develop, validate and commercialize immunotherapy response-predictive diagnostics.” The collaboration team of CheckPoint Sciences and the Icahn Institute at Mount Sinai welcomes the opportunity to meet with pharmaceutical companies to explore programs for commercializing response-predictive companion diagnostics for their immunotherapy drugs that are in the market and in their pipelines. For inquiries, contact Karl G. Wassmann, President of CheckPoint Sciences, Inc., at karl.wassmann(at)checkpointsciences(dot)com or (774) 893-4313.
About CheckPoint Sciences, Inc. CheckPoint Sciences, Inc., based in Cambridge, MA, was formed in 2015 to commercialize response-predictive biomarkers that will facilitate the adoption and use of cancer immunotherapy in the most clinically-effective and cost-efficient manner. The Company’s blood-based biomarkers for predicting the response of individual patients to cancer immunotherapy, currently at the clinical implementation stage, will empower medical professionals to answer critical treatment questions for the benefit of patients and their loved ones. In pursuit of these objectives, the Company has developed clinically-actionable, patent-pending genomic profiles, using biomarkers derived from whole blood, that can reliably predict the response of individual cancer patients to immunotherapy prior to treatment. Medical professionals and payors can use the Company’s whole blood-based biomarkers to help formulate the most effective immunotherapy treatment course on an individualized basis for each cancer patient. For more information, visit http://www.checkpointsciences.com.
About the Mount Sinai Health System The Mount Sinai Health System is an integrated health system committed to providing distinguished care, conducting transformative research, and advancing biomedical education. Structured around seven hospital campuses and a single medical school, the Health System has an extensive ambulatory network and a range of inpatient and outpatient services—from community-based facilities to tertiary and quaternary care. The System includes approximately 6,100 primary and specialty care physicians; 12 joint-venture ambulatory surgery centers; more than 140 ambulatory practices throughout the five boroughs of New York City, Westchester, Long Island, and Florida; and 31 affiliated community health centers. Physicians are affiliated with the renowned Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, which is ranked among the highest in the nation in National Institutes of Health funding per investigator. The Mount Sinai Hospital is ranked as one of the nation’s top 10 hospitals in Geriatrics, Cardiology/Heart Surgery, and Gastroenterology, and is in the top 25 in five other specialties in the 2014-2015 “Best Hospitals” issue of U.S. News & World Report. Mount Sinai’s Kravis Children’s Hospital also is ranked in seven out of ten pediatric specialties by U.S. News & World Report. The New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai is ranked 11th nationally for Ophthalmology, while Mount Sinai Beth Israel is ranked regionally. For more information, visit http://www.mountsinaihealth.org/ or find Mount Sinai on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.