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Abalos Therapeutics has harnessed the unique immune stimulation of the arenavirus to develop a novel anti-cancer approach that provides the full breadth of the immune system’s power specifically against cancer cells. Through viral replication within cancer cells, Abalos’ arenavirus-based drug candidates are designed to awake precise innate and adaptive immune responses and activate all relevant immune cell types against primary tumors and metastases. Led by experienced biotech entrepreneurs and immunology pioneers, Abalos’ goal is to achieve a quantum leap in immuno-oncology.

Development of antibody conjugate-based cancer therapeutics for solid tumors with high unmet needs that are otherwise difficult to treat
Problem: Solid cancers are still very difficult to treat. Most treatments increase life expectancy, but only a few lead to a complete cure. Antibody drug conjugates (ADCs) have proven to be a promising therapeutic approach, but still cause significant and toxic side effects.

The solution: Emergence Therapeutics has identified several areas where ADCs can be improved. These are the antibody itself, the toxin used to kill the cancer cell, and the linker that couples the toxin to the antibody.

Technology/ IP: The antibody-related IP is in-licensed from the University of Aix-Marseille (France) and the toxin-related IP is in-licensed from Heidelberg Pharma.
The IP and all results generated for the ADC in development will be out-licensed or sold by Emergence.

Heidelberg Epignostix is a healthcare company whose mission is to transform cancer diagnostics through data science. The company has developed novel AI-based bioinformatics algorithms with utility in cancer classification for improved accuracy in cancer diagnosis, prognosis and therapy management. The lead product, the Heidelberg Brain Classifier, is currently available as a research-use-only resource. Heidelberg Epignostix is located in Heidelberg, Germany. For more information visit www.epignostix.com.

InCephalo develops exclusively local treatments for neurological diseases, with a focus on cancers in the brain (primary brain cancers as well as secondary brain cancers). The proprietary Compartment Lock technology, also called C-Lock, retains biologics, that are applied locally behind the blood brain barrier, in the central nervous system (CNS) and once they leave the CNS, degrades them rapidly in the systemic compartment. Thereby it significantly improves local CNS therapy, a challenging task with regards to achieving high local concentration (for efficacy) and low systemic footprint (to reduce potential side effects). Especially the peripheral side effects still limit various promising candidates for the treatment of brain cancer or other neurological diseases.

Rigontec GmbH is a preclinical biotech company developing RNA-based immunotherapeutics for the treatment of cancer and viral diseases. Rigontec’s lead compound ImOl100 targets a novel receptor of the innate immune system, Retinoic acid Inducible Gene I (RIG-I).

Tacalyx researches and develops therapeutics targeting TACAs (tumor-associated carbohydrate antigens). These strongly tumor-specific structures are synthesized by cancer cells and contribute significantly to its virulence and metastasis. The recent possibility of synthesizing these complex structures allows the production of specific antibodies for the treatment of currently unsatisfactorily treatable cancers.

Thermosome is a clinical-stage drug development company focused on targeted tumor therapy combined with immune stimulation for improved cancer therapy. At its core is a novel, proprietary tumor targeting approach that allows for significantly increased local drug concentrations and improved tumor penetration to achieve improved clinical treatment efficacy. The lead candidate THE001 is a thermosensitive formulation of doxorubicin being developed in soft tissue sarcoma.

Tubulis generates uniquely matched protein-drug conjugates by combining proprietary novel technologies with disease-specific biology. Our goal is to expand the therapeutic potential of antibody drug conjugates (ADCs) ushering in a new era and delivering better outcomes for patients. Employing the company’s proprietary ADC development approach, Tubulis will advance a variety of conjugates, unlimited by indication

WMT developes small molecules for cancer indications by targeting the Warburg Metabolism. The Warburg Metabolism was first described 100 years ago by Otto Heinrich Warburg and the therapeutic approach is based on the fact that many cancer cells predominantly produce their energy through a high rate of glycolysis followed by lactic acid fermentation even in the presence of abundant oxygen. Using this mechanism for the treatment of cancer turns out to be very difficult, as interventions targeted at the sugar metabolism also cause harm to healthy cells. The approach WMT is using offers an improved therapeutic window as opposed to classical cancer medicines.