News regarding Oslo Cancer Cluster`s international activities

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Photocure with FDA Priority

Oslo Cancer Cluster member Photucure recently announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has accepted a Priority Review for an expansion of Cysview.

 

The FDA has accepted a supplemental New Drug Application (NDA) for Cysview on a priority review basis. Photocure, the Oslo, Norway-based company that developed and is marketing the drug-device system, wants to expand the labeling to include use for hospital patients not staying overnight.

Basically, a Priority Review  means that the FDA will speed up their approval process and a decision is now expected in the first half of 2018.

How Cysview Detects Cancer
Cysview is a method of detecting bladder cancer using photodynamic technology and is the only FDA approved product for use with blue light cystoscopy, where a device called a cystoscope is used to detect cancer inside the bladder.

Cysview is injected into the bladder through a catheter. It accumulates differentially in malignant cells. When illuminated with blue light from the cystoscope, the cancerous lesions fluoresce red, highlighting the malignant areas.

An important Tool
— Photocure is dedicated to improving the lives of patients with bladder cancer and we are committed to working with the FDA to bring this important clinical tool to the US market as soon as possible.

— We look forward to hearing a decision from the FDA early next year on the US Cysview® label expansion to include patients undergoing surveillance cystoscopy using a flexible scope, said Kjetil Hestdal, President & CEO, Photocure ASA.

 

 

 

About Photocure:

Photocure, the world leader in photodynamic technology, is a Norwegian based specialty pharmaceutical company. They develop and commercialize highly selective and effective solutions in several disease areas such as bladder cancer, HPV and precancerous lesions of the cervix and acne.

Their aim is to improve patient care and quality of life by making solutions based on Photocure Technology™ accessible to patients worldwide.

Photocure was founded by the Norwegian Radium Hospital in 1997. Today, the company, headquartered in Oslo, Norway, has over 60 highly skilled employees and operates in Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Finland and the United States.

Jutta Heix, international advisor at Oslo Cancer Cluster, works on bringing SPARK to Norway.

Creating a SPARK in Innovation and Industry

Stanford programme SPARK provides a shimmer of hope for startup companies. Now, SPARK sets sights on Norway. What exactly is SPARK?

We live in a world where technological and innovative solutions in medicine and healthcare are steadily pouring in. Not to mention, these solutions have the power to completely transform the health-sector in pinpointing and curing diseases before they even take hold.

Why, then, is it that we have the power to revolutionize healthcare, but don’t see it happen?

Unfortunate answer
The unfortunate answer lies in the explanation that most of these technological and innovative solutions have a tough time reaching the bedside from the bench. Reason being lack of funding, marketing or other important factors that help an industry flourish. How can we resolve this?

A solution
Enter SPARK: the Stanford programme that provides a unique partnership between the industry and university.

SPARK provides the necessary factors that help start-up and small companies to advance research breakthroughs. This is done by providing the education and mentorship needed to move the project along further.

SPARK scholars
More specifically, it works by providing graduate level courses about drug-development processes as well as “SPARK Scholars”—funding for project development and mentoring. This mentoring is provided by advisors who have expertise in product development, business, clinical care and generally preparing participants for generating research into therapies.

Coming to Norway
The University of Oslo : Life Sciences is planning to bring Stanford’s programme to Norway where two other European SPARK-programmes have visited Oslo in the summer to share their experiences. One of the univesity’s candidates has tested the programme at summer-school in Japan, as well.

 

Innovative solutions
Oslo Cancer Cluster has been an advocate for SPARK’s involvement in Norway, along along with the Norwegian Inflammation Network (NORIN), The Life Science Cluster and Norway Health Tech (previously Oslo Medtech).

Jutta Heix, the international advisor at Oslo Cancer Cluster, comments on SPARK’s involvement:

–The SPARK programme really fills a gap in the lively and growing biopharma innovation system here in Norway and will help to advance more projects and ideas from academia into innovative solutions for patients. In collaboration with SPARK Berlin and SPARK Finland, SPARK Norway will also contribute to building a European SPARK Network providing even broader support, exposure and collaboration opportunities for the academic innovators involved.  

 

The crowd at this year's BIO International Convention in San Diego. Photo: BIO International Convention

International Collaboration in Cancer Innovation

24 oncology innovators from 9 international hubs attended the 6th International Cancer Cluster Showcase in San Diego.

 

The International Cancer Cluster Showcase (ICCS) was born back in 2011 in Washington DC, during the world’s largest biotech conference, BIO International Convention. International cluster managers and representatives from the oncology field in Boston, Toulouse and Oslo met during a networking reception and agreed to team up for a joint initiative to expose their emerging oncology innovators to the global oncology community gathering at BIO.

This idea matured in a stimulating and dynamic annual meeting featuring oncology innovators from several North American and European innovation hubs.


Exciting partnering opportunities
During the  6th edition of ICCS around 200 delegates learned about exciting partnering opportunities pitched by 24 companies from 9 innovation hubs.

Oslo Cancer Cluster was represented by its member companies Oncoimmunity AS and Nordic Nanovector. The two companies presented their preclinical and clinical candidates for treating hematological cancers. Inven2, Norway’ largest tech transfer organisation, gave a glimpse into their growing oncology portfolio.

An overwhelming amount of cutting edge oncology innovations from leading North American and European industry clusters were presented in compact presentations. Poster sessions, networking parts and a final reception allowed the participants to connect and discuss collaboration opportunities.

– I hope that the ICCS 2017 reception was as productive for the participating biotechs as the BIO reception in Washington 6 years ago was for the founders of ICCS, said Jutta Heix, International Advisor at Oslo Cancer Cluster and coordinator for the event.

Oslo Cancer Cluster organizes international events, such as this PERMIDES workshop.

Our International Work

Oslo Cancer Cluster aims to enhance the visibility of oncology innovation made in Norway by being a significant partner for international clusters, global biopharma companies and academic centres.

– Our goal is to support our members in their effort to attract international partners, investments and successful academia-industry collaborations, says International Advisor Jutta Heix.

Heix is responsible for the cluster’s international initiatives, cluster network and partnering activities.

– Back in 2008, Oslo Cancer Cluster was not visible internationally, and few people knew about oncology innovation in Norway. We began to seek out partners and actively approach international pharma companies and other clusters offering relevant synergies, says Heix.


Building relationships abroad

The relationships thrive on joint initiatives. These include invitations to Norway with tailored programmes, where potential collaboration partners can meet academic teams, start-ups and biotechs. Oslo Cancer Cluster has also joined forces with other hubs and clusters internationally.

One such collaboration is the International Cancer Cluster Showcase (ICCS) at the global biotechnology gathering BIO International Convention in the US. In 2017, it is arranged for the 6th time, with European and North American partners, including the Massachusetts Technology Transfer Center, The Oncopole in Québec, The Wistar Institute in Philadelphia, Medicen in Paris and BioCat in Catalonia.

– This year the ICCS will showcase 24 innovative oncology companies from nine international innovation hubs and clusters. Three of our member companies in Oslo Cancer Cluster will use the opportunity to pitch their products and ideas to a global oncology audience, says Heix.

Jutta Heix is Oslo Cancer Cluster’s international advisor.


European and Nordic arenas
Meeting places are important in Europe too, with BIO-Europe, BIO-Europe Spring and Nordic Life Science Days at the top of the list. Oslo Cancer Cluster is the oncology partner at the Nordic Life Science Days. As a region, the Nordic countries are of international importance in the field of cancer research and innovation, especially in precision medicine, and Oslo Cancer Cluster participates in advancing Nordic collaboration.

Oslo Cancer Cluster also engages in more cancer specific European events. One example is the Association for Cancer Immunotherapy Meeting (CIMT), which is the largest European meeting in the field of cancer immunotherapy, also known as immuno-oncology.

– Many of our members are active in the field of immuno-oncology, so for a couple of years we have organized an event called CIMT Endeavour with German partners. The aim here is to discuss and promote translational research and innovation in immuno-oncology, says Heix.


Hot topics

Cancer immunotherapy has had a major impact on cancer treatment and global research and development in the cancer field. The concept took off with the approval of the first immune-checkpoint inhibitor, called Ipilimumab, in 2011. It offered a ground breaking new treatment for melanoma. In 2013, Science Magazine defined cancer immunotherapy as the breakthrough of the year. Since then, immunotherapy has been dominating the agenda of oncology meetings.

Other hot research and development topics are precision medicine and the increased digitization of the health sector. Oslo Cancer Cluster incorporates these topics in the international work, and aims to expand the services it provides for its members. The cluster recently got funding from Innovation Norway to do this, by adding an EU-advisor to the team.

– We want to increase our members’ involvement in EU’s research and innovation programme Horizon 2020. The new EU-advisor will help our members identify relevant funding schemes, find partners and prepare the applications, says Heix.

This initiative has already started to show some results. In the spring of 2017, Oslo Cancer Cluster member OncoImmunity AS won a prestigious Horizon 2020 SME Instrument grant, tailored for small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs). This grant targets innovative businesses with international ambitions — such as the bioinformatics company OncoImmunity.

 

New meeting places
– Member needs are important for us, as it is for clusters in general. Our network is for the benefit of our members. A good way of leveraging the network, is by creating relevant initiatives and new meeting places – to keep things moving forward, says Heix.

Oslo Cancer Cluster has new international initiatives coming up. One is in immuno-oncology, bringing Norwegian biotechs to the well-established research communities on the US East coast. The biotechs will get training and support, and will meet academic medical centres and biopharma companies in Boston and other cities. This initiative is supported by Innovation Norway’s Global Growth programme.

Another new initiative takes on academic innovation. More good ideas from academia should make it into patents, start-ups and investment opportunities for industry partners.

– Stanford University has a programme called SPARK. We are working with Norwegian partners, including The University of Oslo Life Science and The Norwegian Inflammation Network (NORIN), on implementing a Norwegian SPARK-programme. This will be part of the global SPARK-network, and we are already building a European node together with Berlin and Finland, Jutta Heix says.

OncoImmunity AS wins the EU SME Instrument grant

The bioinformatics company OncoImmunity AS was ranked fourth out of 250 applicants for this prestigious grant.

250 companies submitted proposals to the same topic call as OncoImmunity AS. Only six projects were funded.

We applied for the SME instrument grant as it represents an ideal vehicle for funding groundbreaking and innovative projects with a strong commercial focus. The call matched our ambition to position OncoImmunity as the leading supplier of neoantigen identification software in the personalised cancer vaccine market”, says Dr. Richard Stratford, Chief Executive Officer and Co-founder of OncoImmunity.


Personalised cancer vaccines
Neoantigen identification software facilitates effective patient selection for cancer immunotherapy, by identifying optimal immunogenic mutations (known as neoantigens). OncoImmunity develops proprietary machine-learning software for personalised cancer immunotherapy.

This solution also guides the design of neoantigen-based personalised cancer vaccines and cell therapies, and enables bespoke products to be developed faster.

The SME Instrument gives us the opportunity to further refine and optimise our machine-learning framework to facilitate personalised cancer vaccine design. This opportunity will help us establish the requisite quality assurance systems, certifications, and clinical validation with our partners, to get our software accredited as an in vitro diagnostic device”, says Dr. Richard Stratford.

In vitro diagnostics are tests that can detect diseases, conditions, or infections.

Dr. Richard Stratford is Chief Executive Officer and Co-founder of OncoImmunity, member of Oslo Cancer Cluster and part of the Oslo Cancer Cluster Incubator.


Hard to get
Horizon 2020’s SME Instrument is tailored for small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs). It targets innovative businesses with international ambitions — such as OncoImmunity.

“The SME instrument is an acid test; companies that pass the test are well suited to make their business global. It also represents a vital step on the way to building a world-class health industry in Norway”, says Mona Skaret, Head of Growth Companies and Clusters in Innovation Norway.

The SME Instrument has two application phases. Phase one awards the winning company 50 000 Euros based on an innovative project idea. Phase two is the actual implementation of the main project. In this phase, the applicant may receive between 1 and 2,5 million Euros.

The support from the SME instrument is proof that small, innovative Norwegian companies are able to succeed in the EU”, says Mona Skaret.

You can read more about the Horizon 2020 SME Instrument in Norwegian at the Enterprise Europe Network in Norway.

 

Thinking of applying?
Oslo Cancer Cluster helps its member companies with this kind of applications through the EU Advisor Program and close collaboration with Innovayt and Innovation Norway.

The SME Instrument is looking for high growth and highly innovative SMEs with global ambitions. They are developing innovative technologies that have the potential to disrupt the established value networks and existing markets.

Companies applying for the SME Instrument must meet the requirements set by the programme. Please see the SME Instrument website for more information.

Kick-Off: Call for Proposals for PERMIDES

The first call for proposals for the PERMIDES project is opening on March 15th. We urge all small and medium sized biopharma-companies working to take the step into the digital era, to apply for funding up to 60 000 Euros.

 

D.B.R.K Gupta Udatha, project manager for PERMIDES, is very happy to kick off the first call for proposals. He wants to help you succeed in this call for proposal by defining the essentials:

‘In your proposals, you should address the innovation barriers and challenges that you experience in the area of personalised medicine. It should be challenges that somehow can be solved by digitalisation’, says Udatha.

 

Developing novel personalised medicine
The voucher funding scheme of PERMIDES is aimed at small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) from the biopharmaceutical sector developing novel personalised medicine products and solutions (e.g. biotech/medtech companies, diagnostics companies, CROs, biobank companies, bioinformatic companies).

‘To be eligible for funding, project teams must consist of one biopharma SME as the main applicant or beneficiary. In addition, there must be at least one IT SME as a service provider. Potential team partners in the project can be found via the PERMIDES platform, which offers a matchmaking of companies from the biopharmaceutical and IT sectors’, says Udatha.

 

Get more information:

 

Contact:

Jutta Heix, International Advisor
D.B.R.K Gupta Udatha, Project Manager PERMIDES

 

Kronikk i Aftenposten: De nordiske landene kan gjøre noe resten av verden drømmer om

De nordiske landene bør samarbeide mer for å utvikle bedre kreftbehandlinger. Sammen kan Norden bli et globalt forsknings- og testsenter for nye kreftbehandlinger og -medisiner. Det kan gi store gevinster for kreftpasienter i hele verden. Denne kronikken sto på trykk i Aftenposten torsdag 9. mars.

Ketil Widerberg, daglig leder i Oslo Cancer Cluster, skrev kronikken samme uke som The Economist, Forskningsrådet og Oslo Cancer Cluster arrangerte den nordiske konferansen War on Cancer Nordics i Oslo. De nordiske landene ønsker å lede an i kampen mot kreft. Nå er det på tide at infrastrukturer og lovverk legges til rette for det.


Norden kan vise vei i kampen mot kreft. For vi har noe de andre – selv ikke USA – har


Design, TV-serier og nå: kreft
Nordisk design er verdenskjent, og nordisk film har gjennom TV-serier som Broen etablert en ny sjanger i underholdningsindustrien. På 1990-tallet endret Nokia og Ericsson hvordan vi brukte mobiltelefonen. Slike fremskritt setter Norden på det internasjonale kartet og skaper arbeidsplasser. Nå er tiden inne for liknende fremskritt i kampen mot kreft. Vi har gode forutsetninger, men er vi vårt ansvar bevisst?

Vi har fremragende kreftforskning, for eksempel innen immunterapi for kreft, fotodynamisk teknologi og radioaktive legemidler (radiofarmaka). På disse områdene gjør både nordiske forskere og bioteknologifirmaer det godt internasjonalt. Hver for seg er de nordiske landene små, men samlet har de over 26 millioner innbyggere, og er et interessant marked for forskning, bioteknologi- og legemiddelselskaper.


Norden har unike fortrinn
Norden har flere forutsetninger for å lykkes. Først og fremst har alle nordiske borgere et unikt personnummer. Dette mangler faktisk i mange andre land, som USA. Personnummer har gjort det mulig for nordiske myndigheter å samle unike helsedata. I over 60 år har de nordiske landene samlet helse- og kreftdata i biobanker og registre og bygd verdensledende helsesystemer. Den nordiske befolkningen har dessuten et stort digitalt liv, og samfunnet har generell tillit til forskning.

De nordiske landene kan bruke disse felles fortrinnene til å gjøre noe resten av verden drømmer om: bruke offentlige helsedata for å se hvilken lovende medisin som virker på hver enkelt pasient. Slik kan legemiddelet godkjennes og tas i bruk før de tradisjonelle tidkrevende og kostbare delene av klinisk utprøving blir satt i gang. Tiden det tar fra et kreftlegemiddel blir patentert til det blir godkjent til bruk vil bli kortere, og pasienten vil kunne få behandlingen flere år tidligere. Samfunnet vil kunne spare millioner. Norden bør være seg sitt ansvar bevisst og gå i bresjen for raskere utvikling av ny kreftbehandling. Vi har ikke råd til å vente.


Ny viten gir bedre behandling
Kreft er en av vår tids store samfunnsutfordringer. Hvert år dør 8 millioner mennesker av kreft i verden og 14 millioner av oss får en kreftdiagnose. Det er mange, og antallet vil øke. Ifølge Verdens helseorganisasjon vil det øke med hele 70 prosent de neste 20 årene.

Heldigvis øker også forståelsen av hvor komplekse sykdommene som vi kaller kreft er. Vi vet at det finnes over 200 kreftsykdommer, og vi vet at kreft påvirkes blant annet av genetiske faktorer. I tillegg har vi nå forstått at immunsystemet spiller en viktige rolle i utviklingen av ulike kreftsykdommer og at vi kan påvirke immunsystemet til å spille på lag med kroppen mot kreften. Økt kunnskap om hva kreft egentlig er gir oss bedre forutsetninger for å vinne kampen mot kreft. Men med ny viten følger også en ny dynamikk for hvordan behandling skal utvikles, kategoriseres og tilbys pasienter.


Tid for politisk vilje
Digitalisering av kreftforskning gir rask fremgang i mange land. Store globale teknologifirmaer som Microsoft, IBM og Google satser nå på helse, og spesifikt kreft. Med kunstig intelligens kan kreftforskere simulere, teste hypoteser og samle og korrelere data som ikke var mulig for kun få år siden. Norden har unike helsedatabaser, og vi kan bygge opp kompetanse sammen med globale selskaper på samme måte som Norge bygde opp oljeindustrien på 1970-tallet. Da inviterte Norge inn store internasjonale selskaper som utviklet oljeindustrien under statlig styring. Dette krevde samarbeid og tilrettelegging fra det offentlige.

En satsing på et nordisk kreftsamarbeid krever også offentlig tilrettelegging. Myndighetene og offentlige instanser må åpne for at forskere kan få bruke helsedataene vi allerede har. I Norden har vi strukturen som gjør det mulig å nå raskere fram med ny forskning. Vi kan hjelpe pasienter ved å godkjenne og ta i bruk legemidler før de tradisjonelle tidkrevende og dyre siste kliniske studiene settes i gang. Både USA og EU har forsøkt, men med begrenset hell, blant annet fordi de mangler personnummer og har fragmenterte helsesystemer. Der har de politisk vilje, men mangler strukturene.


Et globalt testsenter
Nordiske helsevesen samler inn stadig mer data fra befolkningen. Nå kan slike helsedata brukes til å utvikle medisiner raskere. Det vil stille nye krav til rapportering, sikkerhet og formål med bruk av helsedata. Det vil kreve en åpen og innovativ holdning både fra offentlige og private aktører. Dette er ikke risikofritt, men gevinsten for samfunnet og for den enkelte pasient som overlever takket være raskere og bedre behandling, vil være betydelig.

Norden har en unik mulighet til å være et globalt testsenter for utvikling av nye legemidler som utnytter den offentlige digitale infrastrukturen. Google endret hvordan vi bruker internettet. Vi gikk fra AltaVista til Google, og så oss aldri tilbake. Norden har alle forutsetninger for å lede an i digitaliseringen innen helse. Det kan være med på å endre livet til de 14 millionene nye menneskene som får kreft hvert år.

Ketil Widerberg, daglig leder i Oslo Cancer Cluster

Targovax to present at upcoming conferences

Oslo, Norway, 6 March 2017: Targovax ASA (“Targovax” or “the Company”; OSE: TRVX), a clinical stage company focused on developing immuno-oncology therapies to target, primarily, treatment-resistant solid tumors, announces that members of its senior management will present at the following life sciences and investor conferences:

 

10th European Life Science CEO Forum (hosted by Sachs Associates)
Date: 7 March 2017
Venue: Hilton Zurich Airport Hotel, Zurich, Switzerland

Panel discussion time: 11:10 CET – Advances in Immuno-Oncology Therapeutics Panel

– Magnus Jäderberg (CMO)

Presentation time: 12:25 CET

– Øystein Soug (CEO)

 

Redeye – Fight Cancer Seminar
Date: 10 March 2017
Venue: Redeye, Stockholm, Sweden

Presentation time: 10:50 CET

Participants: Øystein Soug (CEO)

 

11th Annual BIO-Equity Spring 2017 Conference
Date: 20-22 March 2017
Venue: CCIB Convention Centre in Barcelona, Spain

Participants: Øystein Soug (CEO) and Peter Skorpil (VP Business Development)

 

The presentations will be available to download at www.targovax.com following these events.

 

For further information, please contact:

Renate Birkeli, Investor Relations

Phone: +47 922 61 624

Email: renate.birkeli@targovax.com

 

Media and IR enquires:

Jan Petter Stiff – Crux Advisers (Norway)

Phone: +47 995 13 891

Email: stiff@crux.no

 

Julia Phillips/Simon Conway – FTI Consulting (International)

Phone: +44 20 3727 1000

Email: Targovax@fticonsulting.com

 

About Targovax

Arming the patient’s immune system to fight cancer

Targovax is a clinical stage company focused on developing and commercializing novel immuno-oncology therapies to target, primarily, treatment-resistant solid tumors. Immuno-oncology is currently one of the fastest growing therapeutic fields in medicine.

The Company’s development pipeline is based on two novel proprietary platforms:

The first platform, ONCOS, uses oncolytic viruses, an emerging class of biological therapy. ONCOS exclusively uses an adenovirus that has been engineered to be a tumor-targeted immune activator. The platform has the potential to generate therapies with superior efficacy and safety compared to the first approved oncolytic virus therapy, Imlygic®, launched by Amgen. We continue to expect key proof of concept data for this platform in 2017 from a clinical study of lead program ONCOS-102 in patients with refractory malignant melanoma.

The second platform, TG-Peptides (TGP), solely targets tumors that express mutated forms of the RAS protein. Mutations to this protein are common in many cancers and are known to drive aggressive disease progression and treatment resistance. There is a high unmet medical need for therapies that are effective against tumors that express these mutations.  The TGP platform’s therapeutic potential stems from its ability to enable a patient’s immune system to identify and then destroy tumors bearing any RAS mutations. In early 2017, key proof of concept data for the TGP platform from a clinical study of TG01 in resected pancreatic cancer patients showed encouraging overall survival and will determine plans for the future clinical development of this platform.

Targovax’s development pipeline has three novel therapeutic candidates in clinical development covering six indications. Already promising safety and tolerability data and early signs of clinical response have been demonstrated.

Both platforms are protected by an extensive portfolio of IP and know-how and have the potential to yield multiple product candidates in a cost-effective manner. We have a number in early stages of development in addition to the three outlined above.

In July, 2016 the Company listed its shares on Oslo Axess.

This information is subject to the disclosure requirements pursuant to section 5-12 of the Norwegian Securities Trading Act.

The Economist & Oslo Cancer Cluster: War on Cancer Nordics

Oslo Cancer Cluster is proud to be partner of The Economist Events War On Cancer Nordics.

The War on Cancer Nordics 2017 in Oslo will gather leaders in oncology from the Nordic region and beyond, to discuss the region’s primary challenges in cancer care and control. The event will bring together policy makers, NGOs, academia, research and health care professionals, patient groups and cancer control institutes with private sector business leaders.

 

Questions we will answer

  • How much does cancer cost the Nordic countries per year both in terms of treatment costs and its impact on the labour market?
  • Would a unified Nordic oncology framework be desirable? 
  • What can be learnt from countries that have made more progress in prevention initiatives? 
  • How could research in immuno-oncology be scaled across the region to improve outcomes for patients? 
  • What role will new technologies play in shaking up cancer care, from prevention, through diagnosis, to treatment and to optimise symptoms and quality of life?

 

Founding sponsor: The Research Council og Norway and silver sponsor: Roche

Dehns is now member of the Oslo Cancer Cluster

Dehns Patent and Trade Mark Attorneys recently joined the Oslo Cancer Cluster.

Dehns is one of Europe’s largest firms of patent and trade mark attorneys and has a 40 year history of working with Norwegian organisations such as: Dynal, Inven2,Lytix Biopharma, Nextera, NMBU, NTNU, Nycomed, PCI Biotech and Photocure.

As members, our aim is to advise and help protect the other members needs regarding innovations and intellectual property (IP) around cancer research, diagnosis and treatment.

With experts in this field, many of whom also have PhDs, we can help you build and manage your IP portfolio and strategy, including providing advice on the patentability of inventions, draft and file patent applications, represent you in opposition and other contentious proceedings, as well as advise on academia-industry collaborations and licensing agreements.

www.dehns.com

 

Single-dose Betalutin® shows promising efficacy

Nordic Nanovector ASA presented the updated results from its ongoing Lymrit 37-01 Phase 1/2 clinical trial of Betalutin® (177Lu-satetraxetan-lilotomab) in subjects with relapsed non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) at the 58th Annual American Society of Hematology (ASH) meeting (San Diego, CA, USA).

 

The updated data confirm Betalutin®’s promising efficacy and favourable safety profile as a single agent in 38 relapsed NHL patients, having failed multiple prior regimens and being eligible for assessments. The results, based on the data cut-off date of 31 October 2016, were presented by the study’s Principal Investigator Dr. Arne Kolstad from the Department of Oncology at the Oslo University Hospital, Radiumhospitalet.

Key conclusions:

• In the 35 patients evaluable for efficacy, the Overall Response Rate (ORR) was 63%, with 29% Complete Responses (CR)

• The 21 evaluable patients in the study who received Betalutin® at the dose of 15 MBq/kg with 40 mg/m2 lilotomab pre-dosing had an ORR of 62% and a CR of 38%; of these, the 16 patients enrolled in the Phase 2 expansion of Arm 1, had an ORR of 69% and a CR of 38%

• Durable responses have been observed with a median duration of response of 20.7 months for all patients in Arm 1

• Betalutin® is well tolerated, with a predictable and manageable safety profile: most adverse events are haematological in nature, and all have been transient and reversible

• No dose-limiting toxicity (DLT) was reported in Arm 4 (15 MBq/kg Betalutin® plus 100 mg/m2 lilotomab pre-dosing) and this regimen demonstrated lower bone marrow toxicity than Arm 1, 2 and 3. Arm 4 is now enrolling patients to evaluate the higher dosing regimen of 20 MBq/kg Betalutin® plus 100 mg/m2 lilotomab.

The Lymrit 37-01 study is a Phase 1/2 open label, dose escalation study investigating the optimal lilotomab pre-dosing and Betalutin® regimen in patients with relapsed NHL. Data from 38 patients are presented.

Dr. Arne Kolstad, MD commented -The results we are presenting today are very encouraging and continue to highlight the potential of Betalutin® to provide a new treatment option for NHL patients. These patients, particularly those who fail standard CD20-targeted immunotherapy and/or are too frail to receive chemotherapy, are desperately in need of alternative therapies that work through different and complementary mechanisms and are well tolerated. Betalutin® is showing exciting promise in an increasing number of NHL patients and we look forward to the results from future studies that will hopefully confirm its attractive profile.

Dr. Lisa Rojkjaer, MD Nordic Nanovector’s Chief Medical Officer, commented -These new data confirm the promising results for Betalutin®, including durable responses in a number of patients, which were presented earlier this year at the AACR meeting, and continue to demonstrate an encouraging clinical profile as a single agent for treating patients with relapsed NHL. The results also support escalating to a higher dosing regimen in the final stages of this Phase 1/2 study that will allow us to decide an optimal dosing regimen for the pivotal Phase 2 study, PARADIGME, expected in Q1 2017.

The poster (abstract 1780) was presented on Saturday, 3 December 2016 between 5:30PM–7:30PM Pacific Standard Time (Oslo: Sunday 4 December, 2:30AM–4:30AM CET) and is available at: http://www.nordicnanovector.com/product-info/scientific-posters.

 

 

About Nordic Nanovector
Nordic Nanovector is a biotech company focusing on the development and commercialisation of novel targeted therapeutics in haematology and oncology. The Company’s lead clinical-stage product opportunity is Betalutin®, the first in a new class of Antibody-Radionuclide-Conjugates (ARC) designed to improve upon and complement current options for the treatment of non-Hodgkin Lymphoma (NHL). NHL is an indication with substantial unmet medical need and orphan drug opportunities, representing a growing market worth over $12 billion by 2018.

Betalutin® comprises a tumour-seeking anti-CD37 antibody, lilotomab (previously referred to as HH1), conjugated to a low intensity radionuclide (lutetium-177). The preliminary data has shown promising efficacy and safety profile in an ongoing Phase 1/2 study in a difficult-to-treat NHL patient population. The Company is aiming at developing Betalutin® for the treatment of major types of NHL with first regulatory submission anticipated in 1H 2019.

Nordic Nanovector intends to retain marketing rights and to actively participate in the commercialisation of Betalutin® in core markets, while exploring potential distribution agreements in selected geographies. The Company is committed to developing its ARC pipeline to treat multiple selected cancer indications.

Further information about the Company can be found at www.nordicnanovector.com

This information is subject to the disclose requirements pursuant to section 5-12 of the Norwegian Securities Trading Act.

Photocure with good results

Oslo Cancer Cluster member Photocure ASA is a specialty pharmaceutical company focused on photodynamic technologies in cancer and dermatology. They reported a revenue growth of 17 % to NOK 31.6 million in the third quarter of 2016 (Q3 2015: NOK 27.0) for the Hexvix/Cysview commercial franchise and a corresponding EBITDA of NOK 8.0 million.

Watch full presentation here.

 

About:
Photocure, the world leader in photodynamic technology, is a Norwegian based specialty pharmaceutical company. They develop and commercialize highly selective and effective solutions in several disease areas such as bladder cancer, HPV and precancerous lesions of the cervix and acne.

Photocure currently have one product on the market: Hexvix®/Cysview® (The brand name is Cysview in the US and Hexvix in the rest of the world).

The Photocure Technology® is uniquely selective, targeting affected areas without impact to non-affected areas. This allows for non-invasive procedures that improve quality of life.

For more information on Photocure.

Workshop Update: MyData and Blockchain-based innovation in the Digital Health Sector

Oslo Cancer Cluster hosted a workshop co-organized by Alpha Venturi on “MyData and Blockchain-based innovation in the digital Health sector” on 14 November 2016 @ Jónas Einarsson Auditorium. 

Stakeholders and companies from Norway, Finland, United Kingdom and Estonia have been involved in the brainstorming sessions on several aspects of digital health revolution. The Norwegian Health Directorate, Norwegian Centre for E-Health Research and University in Oulu/Digital Health Revolution from Norway and Finland introduced their respective country perspectives on digital healthcare and progress made relative to MyData.

Multinational biopharmaceutical company Amgen presented their views on the potential gains from such an approach. Alpha Venturi iterated the importance of Blockchain and Distributed Ledger Technologies as a potential game changer for Healthcare among other industries. Two foreign companies, Digi.me from UK and Guardtime from Estonia, have also been invited as external speakers to come and present their respective approach to enable access and sharing of personal health data, one of which based on Blockchain, and the pilots they are implementing respectively in Iceland and Estonia among others.

During this workshop, Alpha Venturi and Oslo Cancer Cluster, moderated the discussions on further perspectives on technologies like Blockchain for Health Care and Personalised Medicine. The first half of the workshop included informative presentations from the delegates, and the later half was focused on brainstorming discussions on potential collaborations.

Alpha Venturi will soon release a report from this workshop that will include short-term and long-term visions, recommendations of the activities and innovation projects in digital health space that can be initiated in Norway in partnership with other Nordic countries. You contact the CEO of Alpha Venturi, Wilfried Pimenta de Miranda at: wilfried@alpha-venturi.com

20161114_103338

Given below is the glimpse of the workshop agenda:

Start Activity Min.
8.45 Arrival of the first participants
9.10 Welcome, presentation of participants and background for the initiative

Oslo Cancer Cluster – Gupta Udatha

Alpha Venturi – Wilfried Pimenta de Miranda

20
9.30 Norway: Overview of the e-health situation and roadmap, examples

Norwegian Health Directorate – Erik Hedlund

10
9.40 Norway: Perspectives on ongoing e-health research and innovation related to MyData

Norwegian Centre for E-Health Research – Gustav Bellika

10
9.50 Finland: Overview of the e-health situation and roadmap, examples

Digital Health Revolution – Maritta Perälä-Heape

20
10.10 The changing data landscape and its impact on biopharma

Amgen- Jonathan Doogan

30
10.40 Pause 10
10.50 A person centric example, Health Iceland Living Lab

Digi.me – Julian Ranger and Andrew Carmody

30
11.20 Q&A 20
11.40 Lunch – Open discussions and networking 60
12.40 Introduction to Blockchain + Use cases in the Health sector

Alpha Venturi – Wilfried Pimenta de Miranda

30
13.10 Healthcare pilot for Estonia

Guardtime – Martin Ruubel

30
13.40 Q&A 20
14.20 Pause 10
14.30 How could a person centric approach be applied to a Norway/Finland healthcare sector 30
15.00 How to make personal data available to individuals 30
15.30 Pause 15
15.45 Building a common vision for the partnership, design principles, initial pilot thoughts 45
16.30 Agreement of next steps; creation of working group to follow up from the day 45
17.15 End & Networking until 17.45 30

For further information and discussions on Oslo Cancer Cluster’s digital health projects, please contact our Project Manager D.B.R.K. Gupta Udatha

D.B.R.K Gupta Udatha

Oslo Cancer Cluster and NCE Smart Energy Markets together with four European clusters in medicine and IT managed to land a prestigious Horizon 2020 EU project. The EU project will use innovative IT solutions to develop personalized cancer treatment. Allocated funds are 45 million NOK, of which 34 million NOK are earmarked for small and medium enterprises in the clusters. The EU project with the sounding name “Personalised Medicine Innovation through Digital Enterprise Solutions: PERMIDES”, will utilize digital tools and novel solutions from the IT sector  to support the development of new cancer treatment. This will be achieved by matching small and medium enterprises from the IT and the biopharma sector for joint innovation projects.

View PERMIDES page

Cancer Crosslinks 2017

Det er med stor glede vi inviterer onkologer, hematologer og forskere til det niende Cancer Crosslinks i vår egen Oslo Cancer Cluster Innovasjonspark.

Cancer Crosslinks er den årlige møteplassen for onkologer og hematologer. I 2017 går Cancer Crosslinks av stabelen 26. januar. Vi har delt inn dagen i tre faglige sesjoner som alle presenterer relevante, tverrfaglige temaer med stor klinisk relevans:

• Sesjon 1 “Cancer and Inflammation – new insights and their clinical impact”
• Sesjon 2 “Today’s cancer treatment: how individualized can it be?”
• Sesjon 3 “Classical endpoints vs. Real-world evidence – need to rethink?”

Vi er veldig stolt over å presentere internasjonale toppforelesere fra både Europa og USA som sammen med nasjonale eksperter vil gi innsikt i et fagfelt i rivende utvikling. Åpningssesjonen er med Professor Jerome Galon fra INSERM som blant annet står bak Immunoscore, som er ny metode for rutinemessig klinisk vurdering av prognosen til kreftpasienter. Vi ser også veldig fram til å høre Professor William G. Wierda fra MD Anderson snakke om hvor persontilpasset behandlingen av blodkreft kan gjøres i dag.

Vi håper møtet vil stimulere til tverrfaglig diskusjon og samarbeid “fra laboratorium til sykeseng”.
Presentasjonene vil foregå på engelsk.

Om du har problemer med å registrere deg elektronisk, scann inn svarslippen og send den på mail til jh@oslocancercluster.no. På grunn av stor interesse for Cancer Crosslinks, kan firmaer kun stille med to personer. Kaare Norum Auditorium har plass til 290 deltagere. Møtet vil også bli strømmet direkte.

  • Dersom du trenger fly eller togbillett, ta kontakt med vårt byrå Berg-Hansen på e-mail: bestilling@berg-hansen.no eller på telefonnummer: 08050. Vennligst oppgi kode “OCC”, belastes Oslo Cancer Cluster. Booking vil åpne torsdag 1. desember 2016.

Møtet arrangeres i samarbeid med Bristol-Myers Squibb og AbbVie Norge. Arrangementet er i samsvar med retningslinjene som er inngått mellom Legeforeningen og Legemiddelindustriforeningen. Denne invitasjonen er også sendt til administrasjonen og/eller avdelingsansvarlig, i henhold til sykehusets interne regler.

Size Matters: Need for Nordic Collaboration in Oncology Now

By Elisabeth Kirkeng Andersen, Communication Consultant Oslo Cancer Cluster
& Ketil Widerberg, General Manager Oslo Cancer Cluster

 

The biopharmaceutical industry is at a frenzy to develop innovative drugs for cancer. No wonder, when the market size is estimated to over 800 BNOK in 2020, the population world-wide is getting older and the incidence and prevalence of cancer is increasing. Hence – the need for better treatments is increasing exponentially. Both within immunotherapies and precision medicine there is a global race to develop the next generation treatments.

Nordic countries have a lot to contribute to here: Excellent research, very good public healthcare systems, national registries. To make most out of this they should team up and position the Nordics as a strong player contributing to the global value chain from bench to bedside. The Nordics should unite and act as a one-stop shop for clinical trials within oncology and work with the global companies to set up Nordic collaborations through the value chain from bench to bedside.

Cancer is a global burden. Every year 14 million people are diagnosed with cancer and 8,2 million people die of the disease each year. WHO expect a 70 % increase in diagnosis in the next decade. With rich, stable societies and the happiest and well-educated inhabitants the Nordics have a moral and ethical duty to contribute to solve the Worlds toughest challenges like disease and climate change.

The countries individually, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark are way too small to get attention alone. We are not seen as interesting markets due to small population sizes. But if we team up it is different. Size matters in the war on cancer.

The Nordic countries have some unique features for oncology R&D, and the potential to be a global test bed for novel treatment. Factors we take for granted are unique features globally; great health registries, extensive bio banks, homogenous populations, trust in research, good and public health care systems and unique personal number each of us have from birth to death. The Nordic population may serve both as a predictor for novel biomarkers and diagnostic tests, and later as a real life verification for the effect of new treatments.

The need and benefits of Nordic collaboration within the oncology area is not a new idea. Several voices have raised this issue at numerous occasions. So far nothing more than words and political celebration speeches have come out of this. We have some initiatives going, like Nordic Life Science Days, collaborations between Oslo Cancer Cluster and the Medicon Valley Region and NordicNECT – but now is the time to step up on this. With the digital oncology revolution things will move fast. The Nordic countries need to get a much needed collaboration going. We are ready – let us move now.

Great collaboration between IBM:Watson and Oslo Cancer Cluster

Since IBM became a member of Oslo Cancer Cluster in June this year, there has been a tremendous interest in their software Watson who is about to learn Norwegian from students at Ullern High School.

The role of cognitive technology in cancer diagnostics has received attention both in national and international media. You can find some of the news stories on Watsons role in the fight against cancer below:

International press event created attention all over Europe

Early September Oslo Cancer Cluster hosted an international press event with our member Abbvie. Over 20 journalists from all over Europe came to the Oslo Cancer Cluster Incubator and Innovatiion Park to learn more about the latest technological and scientific developments within cancer research.

 

The journalists attended a full day meeting at the Innovation Park which included a lab session with Ullern High School students and researchers at the Cell Therapy Lab, whom showed them how cells are programmed to kill cancer cells. Gunnar Sæter, Head of the Cancer Institute, introduced the journalists to the topic of precision medicine in oncology with Oslo Cancer Cluster members SAS and IBM demonstrating the latest developments within data collection and analysis. Giske Ursin, Director of  Cancer Registry Norway, explained how the unique health data we have in Norway provides a large unused potential within oncology.

 

The journalist also got to meet Deborah Simms, journalist and cancer survivor and her doctor, John Gribben from the Barts Cancer Institute. They explained the role of collaboration in the diagnostics and treatment of patients with unmet need.

 

You can see the invitation video for the event here:

See the video from the event made by students at Ullern High School here:

More about Deborah Simms and her patient journey here:

News stories related to the event:

Successful Nordic Life Science Days 2016

The Nordic Life Science Days 2016 was a great success at many levels. For the first time the Norwegian life science actors invited to a joint meeting to promote a closer collaboration with the Swedish life science milieu at an even t at the Norwegian Embassy in Stockholm. Oslo Cancer Cluster was co-hosting the Nordic Life Science conference this year, and we hosted three super-sessions on oncology which set the scene for the future of oncology treatment.

 

Below you may find a summary of the coverage of our joint activities with UIO:Life Science and LMI at the Nordic Life Science Days, only in Norwegian. We will also like to stress our gratitude towards both Ambassador Kai Eide and his staff at the Noorwegian Embassy in Stockholm and Director for Innovation Anne Kjertsi Fahlvik at the Norwegian Research Council for sponsoring and great collaboration.

 

Kronikk i Dagens medisin 13. september: Livsvitenskap stort potensial for verdiskaping

Med et nordisk samarbeid for klinisk utprøving kan vi stå sterkere i konkurransen om å tiltrekke oss aktører som vil gjennomføre kliniske studier. Dette kan gi nordiske pasienter tilgang til innovativ behandling.

#noswelife

Aktivitet på Twitter fra nettverkskvelden kan på ses på hashtagen #noswelife

https://twitter.com/search?q=%23noswelife&src=typd

Standbesøk

Fra ambassadørens besøk på standen sammen med medsponsor Forskningsrådet
https://twitter.com/forskningsradet/status/776023988204101633

Omtaler på lmi.no

Nordic Life Science Days er i gang i Stockholm

LMI står på stand med flere andre aktører for å promotere Norge og norsk livsvitenskap.
http://www.lmi.no/aktuelt-fra-lmi/2016/09/nordic-life-science-days-er-i-gang-i-stockholm

Trenger Norge en egen koordinator for livsvitenskap?

Det var et av temaene da ambassaden inviterte til nettverkskveld i går.

http://www.lmi.no/aktuelt-fra-lmi/2016/09/trenger-norge-en-egen-koordinator-for-livsvitenskap

Omtaler på uio.no/livsvitenskap

Norsk-svensk nettverkskveld og Nordic Life Science Days

http://www.uio.no/forskning/satsinger/livsvitenskap/aktuelt/aktuelle-saker/2016/norsk-svensk-nettverkskveld-og-nordic-life-science.html

Også sendt med nyhetsbrev til over 1000 abonnenter

http://www.uio.no/forskning/satsinger/livsvitenskap/aktuelt/nyhetsbrev/2016/september.html

Omtaler på norge.se

Vellykket norsk-svensk dialog-kveld om Life Science samarbeid. Norsk-svensk «Helseinnovatørskole» lansert. http://www.norge.se/News_and_events/Nyheter-om-politikk-og-okonomi/Vellykket-norsk-svensk-dialog-kveld-om-Life-Science-samarbeid-Norsk-svensk-Helseinnovatorskole-lansert-/#.V-kZnfmLRaQ

Nordic Life Science Days og norsk-svensk nettverkskveld

  1. og 15. september arrangeres Nordic Life Science Days i Stockholm, Nordens største konferanse for den globale livsvitenskapsindustrien. I tilknytning til konferansen arrangerer Norges ambassade en svensk-norsk dialog og nettverkskveld.

http://www.uio.no/forskning/satsinger/livsvitenskap/aktuelt/nyhetsbrev/2016/september.html

 

Joe Biden is looking to Norway

Vicepresident Joe Biden used Norway as an example when he spoke at the Social Good Summit this week. Biden was appointed by Barack Obama to lead the “Cancer Moonshot” project. The project aims to make a decade’s worth of advances in cancer prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and care in just 5 years.  

 

The collaboration between Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and Norwegian Cancer Registry is a central part of this strategy. The collaboration, facilitated by Oslo Cancer Cluster, is aiming to optimalize cervical cancer screening by using machine learning and neural networks to look at historical data.

You can find the speech here: https://livestream.com/accounts/1467982/events/6346857/videos/136285154/player?width=640&height=360&autoPlay=false&mute=false

 

More information about the “Cancer Moonshot” initiative here:

More about the collaboration between Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and Norwegian Cancer Registry (in Norwegian):

 

 

 

Eurostars Event – 12th October 2016

Amsterdam, the Netherlands

Interested in setting up an R&D project with international partners? On Wednesday 12th October 2016, the Netherlands Enterprise Agency, together with the EUREKA Secretariat and Enterprise Europe Network are organising an international  event dedicated to the Eurostars programme (www.eurostars-eureka.eu) at the Amsterdam Arena in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. The Programme will start at 9.00 and finish at 18.30.

 

This year’s event will be two-fold:

1) Project Building

An important part of the Eurostars Autumn event is reserved for the Matchmaking of companies and research organisations from the Netherlands and 35 other Eurostars countries. The Matchmaking will be organised by Enterprise Europe Network. During the event companies are also invited to pitch their ideas to a group of peers. Eurostars works on a bottom-up basis, meaning that representatives from all technology fields are welcome to participate in the Programme. The event will focus in particular on:

Life Sciences and Health
ICT and Electronics
Industrial Manufacturing, Materials and Transport
Energy Technologies
Food Technologies
2) Providing Information

There will be opportunities to learn more about the Eurostars Programme (application process, eligibility rules, tips and tricks for writing successful applications) and the national funding rules of your potential project partners. Representatives from the Eurostars Secretariat in Brussels and national Eurostars offices will be present at the event so you can discuss your ideas with them.

 

Registration

Registration for this event is free of charge and is open from 15th July to 7th October 2016. In order to register you must use the online registration form via this site. You can indicate beforehand in which breakout session(s) you would like to take part. The session “Explaining Eurostars” will be given twice. For the Matchmaking you will be required to upload your company profile to the site. Please note that you will need to take care of your own travel and accommodation arrangements.

 

Excursions on 13th October

Some excursions will be organised for participants of this Eurostars event on 13th October. Please check the site regularly for updates about these excursions.

 

More information about Eurostars

If you are interested in taking part in Eurostars or have any questions about the programme, please contact your national Eurostars office (https://www.eurostars-eureke.eu/eurostars-countries/europe). For more information about the Eurostars event in Amsterdam, please contact Arnold Meijer: arnold.meijer@rvo.nl.

More information about Enterprise Europe Network

Enterprise Europe Network helps small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) make the most of business opportunities in the EU and beyond. Connecting SME’s, knowledge institutes and research organisations takes place by organising bilateral meetings at events, international fairs or trade missions. The Network also has an extensive databank of companies and research institutes looking for international partners, which you can also search in this for a partner yourself http://een.ec.europa.eu/.

If you are interested in finding an international business partner or have any questions about the Network, please contact  Rebecca van Leeuwen Rebecca.vanleeuwen@rvo.nl or Michelle Lemmers Michelle.lemmers@rvo.nl

 

For more information see here.

PERMIDES project going forward with project manager hired

Oslo Cancer Cluster and NCE Smart Energy Markets together with four European clusters in medicine and IT managed to land a prestigious Horizon 2020 EU project this spring. The official kick-off for the project is September 7th to 8th in Karlsrue and project manager Gupta Udatha is hired to work in both Oslo and Halden to implement the project from Norwegian side.

 

Project manager Gupta Udatha He works at both the Norwegian Centres of Expertise located in Eastern Norway, i.e. Oslo Cancer Cluster and Smart Innovation Østfold. The PERMIDES project aims at establishing fruitful collaborations between the bio-pharmaceutical and IT sectors in the European region to advance the field of personalised medicine through the development of novel digital solutions with cancer as the model disease.

– Gupta has an amazing background from bioinformatics and big data analytics of biopharmaceutical data. We are confident he is going to drive this project forward in a satisfactory way, says Ketil Widerberg, CEO Oslo Cancer Cluster and Dieter Hirdes, F & I Coordinator Smart Innovation Østfold company as a leader NCE Smart Cluster in a joint comment.

The PERMIDES project will start 1 September and with a kick-off meeting in Karlsruhe 7th to 8th September.

 

 

Photocure hosts bladder cancer key opinion leader breakfast in New York City

Oslo, Norway, August 29, 2016, Photocure ASA hosted on August 25 an educational event in New York aimed at institutional investors and analysts, which focused on the treatment of bladder cancer.
At the event, key opinion leaders (KOLs) from the New York Presbyterian / Columbia Hospital, University of Chicago, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center presented details on the diagnosis, treatment and management of bladder cancer; gave an update on the new American Urological Association / Society of Urologic Oncology guidelines, and addressed progress being made in the evolving field of genomics in guiding treatment and the future direction of bladder cancer management. During the event, physicians also highlighted the role of Photocure’s Blue Light Cystoscopy with Cysview®, in the detection and management of bladder cancer.

Kjetil Hestdal, President and CEO of Photocure commented, -We would like to thank participants for joining us at this informative event. We are encouraged by the progress we are seeing with Blue Light Cystoscopy with Cysview in the US marketplace and are committed to making this important product accessible to patients and physicians in this market.

The event was recorded and presentations can be found at:

Find the video here

Find the presentation slides here

Cancer of the Urinary Bladder
Dr. Gary Steinberg; Bruce & Beth White Family Professor of Surgery & Vice Chairman of Urology & Director Urologic Oncology, University of Chicago

Genomic Landscape of Bladder Cancer
Dr. Yair Lotan; Professor, Chief Urologic Oncology, Holder of the Helen J. & Robert Strauss Professorship, Univ. of Texas Southwestern Medical Center

Risk Stratification and Guidelines for Management of NMIBC
Dr. James McKiernan; John K. Lattimer Professor & Chairman Dept. of Urology, College of Surgeons & Urologist-in-Chief at NY Presbyterian Columbia Hospital & Vice Chair, AUA Guidelines Committee

About Bladder Cancer
Bladder cancer is the fifth most common cancer in men with more than 330,000 new cases annually and more than 130,000 die of the disease1. It has a high recurrence rate with an average of 61% in one year and 78% over five years, making the lifetime costs of managing bladder cancer one of the highest amongst all cancers. It is a costly, potentially progressive disease for which patients have to undergo multiple cystoscopies because of the high risk of recurrence. A recent paper on the economic burden of bladder cancer across the European Union estimates that bladder cancer cost the EU 4.9 billion Euro in 20122. There is an urgent need to improve both the diagnosis and the management of bladder cancer for the benefit of patients and healthcare systems alike.

Bladder cancer is classified into two types, non-muscle invasive bladder cancer (NMIBC) and muscle-invasive bladder cancer (MIBC), depending on the depth of invasion in the bladder wall. NMIBC is still in the inner layer of cells. These cancers are the most common (75%) of all bladder cancer cases and include the subtypes Ta, carcinoma in situ (CIS) and T1 lesions. MIBC is when the cancer has grown into deeper layers of the bladder wall. These cancers, including subtypes T2, T3 and T4, are more likely to spread and are harder to treat.

About Hexvix®/Cysview®
Hexvix®/Cysview® (hexaminolevulinate hydro-chloride) is an innovative breakthrough technology in the diagnosis and management of non-muscle-invasive bladder cancer. It is designed to selectively target malignant cells in the bladder and induce fluorescence during a cystoscopic procedure using a blue light enabled cystoscope. Using Hexvix®/Cysview® as an adjunct to standard white light cystoscopy enables the urologist to better detect and remove lesions, leading to a reduced risk of recurrence.

Hexvix® is the tradename in Europe, Cysview® in U.S. and Canada. Hexvix® is marketed and sold by Photocure in the Nordic countries and in the US with the trade name Cysview®. Photocure has a strategic partnership with Ipsen for the commercialization of Hexvix in Europe, excluding the Nordic region.  Please refer to https://www.photocure.com/Partnering-with-Photocure/Our-partners for further information on our commercial partners.

Ultimovacs satser sterkt på videre utprøving av lovende kreftvaksine

Kreftvaksineselskapet Ultimovacs AS henter NOK 75 millioner til finansiering av videre kliniske studier. Selskapet har gjennomført tre vellykkede fase I-studier for sin terapeutiske vaksine mot kreft. Over 50 kreftpasienter har deltatt i studiene. Studiene viser at mer enn 80% av pasientene får aktivert sitt immunsystem som følge av denne behandlingen.

Bilde: Administrerende direktør Øyvind Kongstun Arnesen, kreditering: Charlotte Sverdrup

Eksisterende aksjonærer og ansatte bidrar med NOK 55 millioner, mens Watrium AS skyter inn NOK 15 millioner av totalt MNOK 20 millioner fra nye aksjonærer.
«Studiene er relativt små, men gir klare signaler om at vaksinen kan gi positive kliniske effekter for pasientene», sier Øyvind Kongstun Arnesen som er administrerende direktør i Ultimovacs.

I de nye kliniske studiene som skal igangsettes ønsker selskapet å dokumentere at vaksinen kan gi betydelig behandlingsgevinst for kreftpasienter.

Ultimovacs er ett av flere norske selskaper med tilknytning til Oslo Cancer Cluster som ligger langt fremme i utviklingen av nye behandlingsformer mot kreft basert på immunterapi. Norge ligger langt fremme innenfor immunterapi og har et godt grunnlag for å utvikle en næring med internasjonalt potensial. «Vår teknologi, som har sitt utspring fra Radiumhospitalet, kan vise seg å gi et betydelig bidrag i utviklingen av nye metoder for kreftbehandling», sier Øyvind Kongstun Arnesen. Vaksinen vil over de neste 2-3 årene testes ut på mer enn 250 pasienter i flere land.

Ultimovacs har over det siste året styrket sin organisasjon vesentlig og har nå 10 ansatte.
«Vi har et svært kompetent team på plass for videre utprøving og kommersialisering av vaksinen internasjonalt», fortsetter Øyvind Kongstun Arnesen.

Ultimovacs har solide finansielle eiere som Gjelsten Holding AS, Canica AS, Sundt AS og nå kommer også Watrium AS inn som ny aksjonær. I den forbindelse vil Kristin Wilhelmsen fra Watrium tre inn i styret i Ultimovacs. Inven2 AS og Radiumhospitalets Forskningsstiftelse er også betydelige eiere i Ultimovacs.

Ultimovacs er verdsatt til NOK 475 millioner før innhenting av ny kapital. DNB Markets og Arctic Securities har bistått selskapet som finansielle rådgivere og tilretteleggere av transaksjonen.
«Vi er meget tilfreds med å ha en bred sammensetning av kapitalsterke, langsiktige og kompetente eiere som bidrar aktivt til den videre utviklingen av selskapet», sier styreleder Ketil Fjerdingen.

__________________________________________________________________________________

Ultimovacs AS er et norsk selskap som arbeider med å utvikle immunterapi mot kreft i form av en universell, terapeutisk kreftvaksine.  I dag har selskapet 10 ansatte som holder til i Oslo Cancer Cluster Innovasjonspark ved Radiumhospitalet. Selskapet er i ferd med å avslutte sitt fase I-program hvor man har fått data om sikkerhet, valg av dose og vaksinens evne til å aktivere immunsystemet. Med støtte i disse dataene går selskapet nå videre til fase II for å undersøke om vaksinen har positiv effekt på kreftsykdom. Ultimovacs største eiere er Gjelsten Holding AS, Inven2, Radiumhospitalets Forskningsstiftelse, Langøya Invest, Canica AS og Sundt AS.

Photocure with exciting news: FDA-approval of new packaging for bladder cancer product

New Cysview kit has an improved design providing healthcare professionals with an improved, simplified, and easy-to-use product.

 

Oslo Cancer Cluster member Photocure recently received the positive news that the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) has granted approval for an improved and more user-friendly packaging for Cysview. Regulatory approval in EU was granted in July 2016.

Diluent for Cysview is used to reconstitute the Cysview powder resulting in the Cysview solution. The diluent that is used to reconstitute the Cysview powder will now be provided in a prefilled syringe and in a needle free kit.

“This improvement is aligned with our mission to provide bladder cancer patients with access to treatments that improve their lives. The new Cysview kit will simplify the clinical use of Cysview both in the use of Blue Light Cystoscopy with Cysview during bladder cancer resection as well as the future launch of Cysview in the outpatient surveillance setting”, says Kjetil Hestdal, M.D., Ph.D., President and CEO, Photocure ASA.

 

 

About Hexvix®/Cysview®
Hexvix®/Cysview® (hexaminolevulinate hydro-chloride) is an innovative breakthrough technology in the diagnosis and management of non-muscle-invasive bladder cancer. It is designed to selectively target malignant cells in the bladder and induce fluorescence during a cystoscopic procedure using a blue light enabled cystoscope. Using Hexvix®/Cysview® as an adjunct to standard white light cystoscopy enables the urologist to better detect and remove lesions, leading to a reduced risk of recurrence.

Hexvix® is the tradename in Europe, Cysview® in U.S. and Canada. Hexvix® is marketed and sold by Photocure in the Nordic countries and in the US with the trade name Cysview®. Photocure has a strategic partnership with Ipsen for the commercialization of Hexvix in Europe, excluding the Nordic region.  Please refer to https://www.photocure.com/Partnering-with-Photocure/Our-partners for further information on our commercial partners.

 

About Photocure ASA
Photocure, headquartered in Oslo Norway, is a specialty pharmaceutical company and world leader in photodynamic technology. Based on our unique proprietary Photocure Technology® platform, Photocure develops and commercializes highly selective and effective solutions within disease areas with high unmet medical need, such as bladder cancer, HPV and precancerous cervical lesions, and skin conditions. Our aim is to provide solutions, which can improve health outcomes for patients worldwide. Photocure is listed on the Oslo Stock Exchange (OSE: PHO). Information about Photocure is available at www.photocure.com.

 

About Bladder Cancer
Bladder cancer is the fifth most common cancer in men with more than 330 000 new cases annually and more than 130 000 die of the disease1. It has a high recurrence rate with an average of 61% in one year and 78% over five years, making the lifetime costs of managing bladder cancer one of the highest amongst all cancers. It is a costly, potentially progressive disease for which patients have to undergo multiple cystoscopies because of the high risk of recurrence.

A recent paper on the economic burden of bladder cancer across the European Union estimates that bladder cancer cost the EU 4.9 billion Euro in 2012. There is an urgent need to improve both the diagnosis and the management of bladder cancer for the benefit of patients and healthcare systems alike.

Bladder cancer is classified into two types, non-muscle invasive bladder cancer (NMIBC) and muscle-invasive bladder cancer (MIBC), depending on the depth of invasion in the bladder wall. NMIBC is still in the inner layer of cells. These cancers are the most common (75%) of all bladder cancer cases and include the subtypes Ta, carcinoma in situ (CIS) and T1 lesions. MIBC is when the cancer has grown into deeper layers of the bladder wall. These cancers, including subtypes T2, T3 and T4, are more likely to spread and are harder to treat.

PCI Biotech with positive opinion for Orphan Drug Designation

Oslo Cancer Cluster member PCI Biotech has received positive opinion from the European Medicine Agency’s (EMA) Committee for Orphan Medicinal Products (COMP) for its lead product candidate, fimaporfin. Firmaprofin is intended to be used in the treatment of bile duct cancer,  cholangiocarcinoma.

Fimaporfin (AmphinexTM) is in clinical phase I/II development for inoperable bile duct cancer, a disease without approved medicinal treatment and a high need of better local treatment alternatives.

 

About bile duct cancer (cholangiocarcinoma)  
The bile duct drains bile from the liver into the small intestine. Biliary tract sepsis, liver failure and/or malnutrition and cachexia due to locoregional effects of the disease are the most important causes of death. Currently, surgery is the only curative option for these patients; yet the majority of the tumors are inoperable at presentation. Inoperable patients are treated with stenting to keep the bile duct open and with chemotherapy. The combination of gemcitabine and cisplatin has shown promising results and has become standard treatment in some regions, but there is still a need for better treatments to increase overall survival and quality of life.

 

About PCI Biotech         
PCI Biotech is a cancer focused biopharmaceutical company headquartered in Norway and listed on the Oslo Stock Exchange (Axess). The company is developing therapeutic products based on its proprietary photochemical internalisation (PCI) technology. The PCI technology works by inducing triggered endosomal release and may be used to unlock the true potential of a wide array of therapeutic modalities, such as small molecules, vaccines and nucleic acids.  The company has a clinical Phase I/II program in bile duct cancer.

The company is also developing PCI as a vaccination technology. When applied in the emerging field of cancer immunotherapy, PCI can be used to enhance the important cytotoxic effect of therapeutic cancer vaccines. The PCI technology is also very well suited for intracellular delivery of nucleic acids, such as RNA therapeutics. By releasing nucleic acid compounds from endosomes where they are trapped following administration, PCI addresses one of the major bottlenecks facing this emerging and exciting field.  PCI Biotech follows a strategy to create value by improving the effect of existing cancer drugs and by realising the large potential in new therapeutics.

 

Targovax recruits the first patient in a trial with the oncolytic virus ONCOS-102 in malignant pleural mesothelioma

Oslo 1 July 2016: Targovax today announced that the first patient has been dosed in a phase Ib/II clinical trial evaluating ONCOS-102 for the treatment of malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM), a rare type of cancer in the lining of the lung, in combination with pemetrexed and cisplatin.

 

“New therapies are needed to provide better care for patients with mesothelioma, a highly malignant cancer with poor prognosis” says Dr Magnus Jaderberg, CMO of Targovax. “This clinical trial will provide data to evaluate the efficacy and safety of ONCOS-102 in first and second line mesothelioma patients, and we hope that our immunotherapy can provide additional benefit to chemotherapy, the existing standard of care.,

 

“In addition, treating the first patient in the first oncolytic virus trial of the merged company is of course an exciting moment for Targovax and all its stakeholders” adds Dr Jaderberg.

 

The trial is a randomized phase I/II clinical trial of 30 patients, with a phase Ib safety lead-in cohort of six patients, in first line and second line MPM patients who are eligible for treatment with pemetrexed and cisplatin. The trial’s main objectives are determination of safety, immune activation at lesional level and in peripheral blood, clinical response and the correlation between clinical outcome and the immunological activation. Several investigational sites in Europe will participate in this study. In addition to this trial, Targovax plans to initiate three immunotherapy combination trials with ONCOS-102 and one with its RAS peptide vaccine TG02 during the second half of 2016.

 

Malignant mesothelioma is a rare type of cancer often caused by exposure to asbestos. There are no curative treatments although surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy can sometimes help to improve patient prognosis and life expectancy. Pemetrexed and cisplatin is the only standard of care chemotherapy for malignant mesothelioma, but the median PFS/OS (progression-free survival/overall survival) from the initiation of treatment is only approximately 12 months.

 

ONCOS-102 is a purposefully engineered human serotype 5/3 adenovirus coding for human GM-CSF optimized to induce systemic anti-tumor T cell response in cancer patients. In a previous Phase I trial, ONCOS-102 treatment induced tumor specific immune activation both at systemic and lesional level. The immune activation was associated with clinical benefit.

For further information, please contact:

 

Gunnar Gårdemyr, CEO
Phone: +46 73 083 77 79
Email: ggardemyr@targovax.com

 

Øystein Soug, CFO
Phone: +47 906 56 525
Email: oystein.soug@targovax.com

 

Arming the patient’s immune system to fight cancer
Targovax is a clinical stage immuno-oncology company developing targeted immunotherapy treatments for cancer patients. Targovax has a broad and diversified immune therapy portfolio and aims to become a world leader in its area. The company is currently developing two complementary and highly targeted approaches in immuno-oncology.

 

ONCOS – 102 is a virus-based immunotherapy platform based on engineered oncolytic viruses armed with potent immune-stimulating transgenes targeting solid tumors. This treatment is designed to reactivate the immune system’s capacity to recognize and attack cancer cells.

 

TG01 and TG02 are part of a peptide-based immunotherapy platform targeting the difficult to treat RAS mutations found in more than 85% of pancreatic cancers, 50% of colorectal cancer and 20-30% of all cancers. Targovax is working towards demonstrating that TG vaccines will prolong time to cancer progression and increase survival.

 

These product candidates will be developed in combination with multiple treatments, including checkpoint inhibitors in several cancer indications. Targovax also has a number of other cancer immune therapy candidates in the early stages of development.

Nordic Nanovector to present at BIO International Convention on 7 June 2016

Nordic Nanovector ASA (OSE: NANO), a biotechnology company focusing on the development of novel targeted therapeutics in haematology and oncology announces that Luigi Costa, Chief Executive Officer, will hold a presentation at BIO International Convention in San Francisco, US on Tuesday 7 June 2016, at 3:30pm PDT in the room: Theater 1.

The presentation will be available at Nordic Nanovector’s website (www.nordicnanovector.com, Investor Relations/Reports and Presentations/Presentations/2016).

 

For further information, please contact:

Tone Kvåle, Chief Financial Officer
Cell: +47 91 51 95 76
Email: ir@nordicnanovector.com

International Media Enquiries:
Mark Swallow/David Dible (Citigate Dewe Rogerson)
Tel: +44 207 282 2948/+44 207 282 2949
Email: nordicnanovector@citigatedr.co.uk

About Nordic Nanovector
Nordic Nanovector is a biotech company focusing on the development and commercialisation of novel targeted therapeutics in haematology and oncology. The Company’s lead clinical-stage product opportunity is Betalutin®, the first in a new class of Antibody-Radionuclide-Conjugates (ARC) designed to improve upon and complement current options for the treatment of non-Hodgkin Lymphoma (NHL). NHL is an indication with substantial unmet medical need and orphan drug opportunities, representing a growing market worth over $12 billion by 2018. Betalutin® comprises a tumour-seeking anti-CD37 antibody (HH1) conjugated to a low intensity radionuclide (lutetium-177). The preliminary data has shown promising efficacy and safety profile in an ongoing Phase 1/2 study in a difficult-to-treat NHL patient population. The Company is aiming at developing Betalutin® for the treatment of major types of NHL with first regulatory submission anticipated in 1H 2019. Nordic Nanovector intends to retain marketing rights and to actively participate in the commercialisation of Betalutin® in core markets, while exploring potential distribution agreements in selected geographies. The Company is committed to developing its ARC pipeline to treat multiple selected cancer indications.

Further information about the Company can be found at www.nordicnanovector.com

Science publication on a breakthrough methodological development

Erlend Strønen, Johanna Olweus and the Immunotherapy Jebsen Center team’s work on a breakthrough methodological development in generating  broad and tumour-specific T-cell immune responses has been published in Science. The work is based on a novel allogeneic approach. This is a powerful technological development which can in the relatively near future be subjected to clinical testing.

Link to on line publication

 

Nordic Nanovector announces first quarter 2016

Nordic Nanovector reports steady operational progress on Betalutin®’s clinical development plan in Follicular Lymphoma (FL), with recruitment of both sites and patients proceeding according to schedule. The Lymrit 37-01 study is on track to define the optimized dose regimen to be used in PARADIGME, the pivotal Phase 2 study planned to start in 2H 2017. Updated data from this ongoing clinical study, presented at the American Association of Cancer Research (AACR) in April, confirm Betalutin®’s efficacy potential, durability of response and favourable safety profile in patients with advanced FL.

The company continues to advance its product pipeline. Having received clearance of the Investigational New Drug (IND) Application from the FDA and acceptance of the protocol design from EU Authorities, Nordic Nanovector is ready to initiate its Phase 1 clinical study for Betalutin® in diffuse large B cell lymphoma (DLBCL). Other progresses include the research and development collaboration with Paul Scherrer Institute, aiming at developing new Antibody-Radionuclide-Conjugates (ARCs) for treatment of single cell leukaemias. During the first quarter, the company received a grant of up to NOK 15 million from the Research Council of Norway’s User-driven Research-based Innovation programme to support the discovery and development of novel targeted therapeutics for leukaemia and NHL.

Luigi Costa, CEO of Nordic Nanovector, comments: “We are pleased to report that our operations are progressing according to plan and on track to meet milestones. The updated results from Betalutin® in FL are promising and reinforce our belief in its promise to become a significant new treatment of NHL. We have also made good progress across all key areas, including the initiation of a clinical study for Betalutin® in a second NHL indication, with a significant unmet medical need, and promising preclinical research highlighting further opportunities for our pipeline.”

Operational Highlights

• Steady operational progress on Betalutin®’s clinical development plan in number of sites activated and patients enrolled

• Received grant from Research Council of Norway

• Presented updated clinical results at AACR in April, which confirm Betalutin®’s promising efficacy and increasing Duration of Response

• Received clearance of the Investigational New Drug (IND) application, enabling initiation of the study in the US, for a new Phase 1 clinical study of Betalutin® in DLBCL

• Research and development collaboration entered with Paul Scherrer Institute, aiming at developing new Antibody-Radionuclide-Conjugates for treatment of single cell leukaemias

• First good manufacturing process batch of the chimeric HH1 antibody successfully completed

 

Financial Highlights Q1 2016

(Figures in brackets = same period 2015 unless otherwise stated)

• Revenues amounted to MNOK 0.078 (MNOK 0.076)

• Total operating expenses were MNOK 52.7 (MNOK 35.9)

• Loss for the quarter amounted to MNOK 52.7 (loss of MNOK 35.8)

• Cash and cash equivalents amounted to MNOK 671.9 at 31 March 2016 (MNOK 743.4 at 31 December 2015)

 

Outlook

The promising updated results from the ongoing Phase 1/2 study with Betalutin®, the good progress made in advancing this study and strong findings from the research and development pipeline bode well for Nordic Nanovector’s operations going forward. Management will continue to focus its efforts on the efficient execution of its plans and to meet the anticipated clinical milestones. Current cash resources are expected to be sufficient to reach the first regulatory submission for Betalutin® in FL in 1H 2019.  

 

Presentation and web cast details

A presentation by Nordic Nanovector’s senior management team will take place at 8:30 am CEST at:

Thon Hotel Vika Atrium Munkedamsveien 45 0250 Oslo

Meeting Room: NYLAND

The presentation will be recorded as a webcast and will be available at www.nordicnanovector.com in the section: Investor Relations/Webcast.

 

 

 

DoMore! receives Lighthouse project grant from the Norwegian Research Council

The Norwegian Research Council IKTPLUSS has selected The DoMore! project application as one of the 3 winners of the prestigious Lighthouse Project grant. The Lighthouse Project winning proposals were announced at the Norwegian E-health conference on the 26th april 2016.

 

The DoMore! project aims to explore the unique combination of academic and industrial competence within the project group to radically improve prognostication and hence treatment of cancer by using digital tools for pathology. ​The DoMore! project focuses on heterogene​​ity in cancer​ and is led by Institute Director Håvard Danielsen.​

​By largely digitalizing and automating diagnostics and prognostication of cancer, we can literally DoMore! and analyze a ​greater number of samples from the same tumor​,​ ​leading to a more precise diagnosis for each patient​ ​​​​Safe storage, analysis and prosessing of the​ ​B​ig ​D​ata​ the project will produce will also be handled by the project partners.

The ​DoMore!​ ​team ​is composed ​of experts within several fields, including: digital imaging, processing, robotics, pathology, cell biology, surgery and oncology, both in Norway and abroad​​. ​​Together, we will create solutions that will​​ ​​​​allow​ us to DoMore!, resulting in objective cancer diagnostics that can be made available to all patients.

Read more about the DoMore!-project here.

Apim, Vaccibody and Targovax will present at ICCS prior to BIO in San Fransisco

Oslo Cancer Cluster will for the 5th time arrange International Cancer Cluster Showcase, ICCS in collaboration with leading cluster partners from Europe and North America. 20 oncology biotechs will pitch their latest innovations and partnering opportunities.

Member companies pitching at ICCS are Apim Therapeutics, Vaccibody and Targovax.

Oslo Cancer Cluster will not feature a booth this year, but International Advisor Jutta Heix will be present at BIO and participate in partnering meetings as well as CEO Ketil Widerberg,

Photocure anoounces grant of patents for CEVIRA®

Oslo Cancer Cluster member Photocure announces that a new patent for Cevira® has been granted in Europe. Cevira® is one of Photocure’s promising pipeline products and is being developed as a new and innovative breakthrough for the treatment of precancerous lesions of the cervix.

The newly granted patent protects the Cevira® drug, its use and its combination with a drug delivery device, such as the Cevira® device, until 2030. This new key patent in Photocure’s Cevira® portfolio complements the company’s proprietary two European patents which protect different aspects of the Cevira® device, and which expire 2029.

Concurrently, the United States Patent and Trademark Office has issued a Notice of Allowance for Photocure’s patent application related to the Cevira® drug. A US patent protecting the Cevira® drug in a similar way as the above-mentioned European patent will issue shortly.

“The approval of this latest European patent and the Notice of Allowance for the equivalent US application is a key milestone for us in our continued work to secure the long-term value of Cevira®. The new patents further strengthen Photocure’s robust patent portfolio and provide Cevira® market exclusivity for the long-term. Cevira® is a key asset for us, with the potential to not only treat HPV induced cervical high grade disease but also to prevent the development of cervical cancer, which affects more than 500,000 women annually”, said Kjetil Hestdal, President and CEO of Photocure.

For more info: www.photocure.com

Oslo Cancer Cluster & NCE Smart Energy Markets: Partners in prestigious Horizon 2020 EU project of 45 MNOK

Oslo Cancer Cluster and NCE Smart Energy Markets together with four European clusters in medicine and IT managed to land a prestigious Horizon 2020 EU project. The EU project will use innovative IT solutions to develop personalized cancer treatment. Allocated funds is 45 million, of which 34 million is earmarked for small and medium enterprises in the clusters.

 

The EU project has the sounding name “Personalised Medicine Innovation trough Digital Enterprise Solutions: PERMIDES”, will utilize the digital revolution to develop new systems for cancer treatment. This will be achieved by matching the small and medium enterprises within IT with cancer biotechs in the six clusters. This matching shall take place both virtually and physically. Utilization of accumulated expertise in Big Data Analytics from other industries, such as energy industry, will enable the development of digital systems and solutions.

 

Developing cancer treatment smarter

– More and more people are diagnosed with cancer, both because the population is steadily increasing, but also because people get older. There is a crying need for innovative cancer treatment. Health care institutions as well as many biotech companies are lagging behind in adopting the latest digital solutions. For Norway in a time of souring oil prizes and in need of new industries, PERMIDES is an important project that will develop solutions for tomorrow’s business community, says Ketil Widerberg, CEO of Oslo Cancer Cluster.

 

Digital revolution from energy to medicine

– The world has just begun to discover the enormous potential Big Data Analytics will represent for society and business. PERMIDES will contribute to research that may save the lives of many people in the coming years. It is the unique competence across clusters that is the core of this project: The transfer of unique Big Data Analytics expertise from smart energy to personalized medicine, says Dieter Hirdes, F & I Coordinator Smart Innovation Østfold company as a leader NCE Smart cluster .

 

Excellent revue

PERMIDES succeed in landing the EU support as one of five projects of 115 applications. It received a score of 14 of a possible 15, and is thus in the top range. Those companies that match each other can get up to 600 000 NOK in direct support. PERMIDES ends in 2019, and the goal is then that:

  • 120 IT companies and cancer biotechs have benefited from technology transfer activities
  • 75 enterprises have participated in networking conferences at regional and European level
  • 100 companies have placed its profile in a semantic matchmaking portal
  • 90 innovation projects is ongoing between IT and cancer biotechs through a voucher system

 

Facts

Oslo Cancer Cluster and NCE Smart Energy Markets are two of 14 clusters in the Norwegian Centres of Expertise program: www.nce.no .

Oslo Cancer Cluster is a research and industrial cluster within cancer and gathers over 75 research institutions, hospitals, biotech firms and biopharmaceutical companies from all over Norway and Northern Europe. The cluster’s vision is to accelerate the development of innovative cancer treatments for the benefit of cancer patients. In August 2015 Oslo Cancer Cluster Innovation Park and Incubator opened its premises next to the Radium Hospital in Oslo. The incubator aims to contribute to more entrepreneurial businesses based on cancer research: Today the Incubator comprise of lab and office space to more than 25 institutions: www.oslocancercluster.no // www.occincubator.com.

 

Smart Innovation Østfold heads NCE Smart Cluster and has since 2009 initiated or participated in 20 different research and innovation projects (F & I) with a total budget of over 300 MNOK. Four of which are EU projects. Smart Innovation Østfold heads Horizon 2020 project EMPOWER with a budget of more than NOK 60 million. NCE Smart cluster comprise of a number of IT companies and academic communities who hold the leading expertise in Big Data Analytics now used in smart energy. The technology is generic, and it is therefore great potential to transfer this expert knowledge to applications in personalized medicine: www.ncesmart.com.

 

 “Personalised Medicine Innovation trough Digital Enterprise Solutions: PERMIDES»

Participants: Six clusters and two industrial partners in IT.

  • Oslo Cancer Cluster SA
  • SMART INNOVATION ØSTFOLD
  • TECHNISCHE Universitaet DARMSTADT
  • Cluster Individualisierte Immunintervention (CI3)
  • intelligent views gmbh
  • NETSYNO Software
  • ONCOTYROL-CENTER FOR Personalized CANCER MEDICINE
  • BUSINESS UPPER AUSTRIA

Photocure: Results from 2015

Oslo Cancer Cluster member Photocure had a great year in 2015 with increased sales. Photocure is a Norwegian specialty pharmaceutical company focused on photodynamic technologies in cancer and dermatology, listed on the Oslo Stock Exchange.

 


Highlights include:
(Numbers in brackets and comparisons are for the corresponding period in 2014.)

  • Hexvix/Cysview global in-market sales increased 22% to NOK 59 million in the fourth quarter and 20% for the full year to NOK 215 million. Full year in-market unit sales increased 7%
  • Sales revenues increased 34% in fourth quarter. Full year sales revenues increased 31% to NOK 122.3 million (NOK 93.6 million)
  • Commercial segment EBITDA increased 70% to NOK 28.7 million (NOK 16.8 million) with EBITDA margin at 21% (17%) for the full year
  • Visonac® phase 2b clinical trial results published in the British Journal of Dermatology
  • Cash and cash equivalents of NOK 134 million as of 31 December 2015

 

President & CEO Kjetil Hestdal comments: “Throughout 2015, we made great strides towards our goal of building Photocure into a Specialty Pharma Company. Consistent with 2014, we continued to drive revenue growth in all major regions in 2015, while continuously increasing the profitability of our urology focused commercial franchise. Hexvix/Cysview market share continues to grow in the TURB segment across the major markets, and we have started a substantial effort to penetrate the large bladder cancer surveillance segment. Through new partnerships signed in 2015, Hexvix/Cysview will expand into Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

We also continued advancements in our product pipeline this past year. With Cevira, we gained alignment with the US FDA on the pivotal registration program. In addition, the long term value of our novel late stage, phase 3 ready assets, Cevira and Visonac, were further strengthened with issuance of new patents.”

Picture: Faximile fra VG

 

View presentations and videos from Cancer Crosslinks

Cancer Crosslinks 2016 featured cutting-edge presentations from leading American and Norwegian clinicians and researchers within the field of cancer immunotherapy. You may look at their presentations again or for the first time via following the links below.  You may also watch videos of some of the presentations.

 

Picture above: The three Cancer Crosslinks 2016 keynote speakers.  From left: Professor Renier Brentjens, Dr. Stefanie Spranger and Professor Gordon Freeman.
Photo: U-Casters.

 

Videos:

International keynote presentations:

National presentations:

Presentations are published by courtesy of the lecturers.

PCI Biotech and Ultimovacs initiate preclinical research collaboration

Two of the Oslo Cancer Cluster biotech members situated in the Oslo Cancer Cluster Incubator; PCI Biotech and Ultimovacs, are initiating a preclinical research collaboration. The purpose of the collaboration is to utilise the companies’ complementary scientific platforms to explore potential synergies.

 

PCI Biotech, a cancer focused biopharmaceutical company, and Ultimovacs, a pharmaceutical company developing novel immunotherapy against cancer. Both companies are situated in the Oslo Cancer Cluster Incubator.

 

Cancer vaccination

The partnership is governed by a preclinical research collaboration agreement. In brief, the preclinical research collaboration will evaluate technology compatibility and synergy based on in vivo studies. The companies will evaluate results achieved from this research collaboration and then explore the potential for a further partnership.

Per Walday, CEO of PCI Biotech, said -I’m very pleased to announce our first research agreement in the field of cancer vaccination. We believe that the PCI technology has the potential to play a role in the realisation of several new therapeutic modalities, including cancer immunotherapy. Our preclinical research with other peptide vaccines have demonstrated strong enhancement of important cellular immunity responses and we look forward to explore synergies with Ultimovacs promising vaccination technology.

Øyvind Kongstun Andersen, CEO of Ultimovacs, said -Through this preclinical collaboration we are able to explore possible synergies between our two technologies. PCI has a very promising novel technology. Our therapeutic cancer vaccine is documented in patients to activate the immune system against cancer. We find it important for small biotech companies to collaborate and explore synergistic potential when there is an underlying scientific rationale. Such collaborative efforts may further strengthen the position of Norwegian companies within immunotherapy, which has become an important cancer treatment with a fast growing market.

About PCI Biotech
PCI Biotech is a cancer focused biopharmaceutical company headquartered in Norway and listed on the Oslo Stock Exchange (Axess). The company is developing therapeutic products based on its proprietary photochemical internalisation (PCI) technology. The PCI technology works by inducing triggered endosomal release and may be used to unlock the true potential of a wide array of therapeutic modalities, such as small molecules, vaccines and nucleic acids. The company has a clinical Phase I/II program in bile duct cancer, which is an orphan indication without approved medicinal products and a high need for better local treatments. The indication is well suited for PCI treatment, with easy light access through routine endoscopic methods and an active generic drug (gemcitabine) significantly enhanced by PCI. The company is also developing PCI as a vaccination technology. When applied in the emerging field of cancer immunotherapy, PCI can be used to enhance the important cytotoxic effect of therapeutic cancer vaccines. The PCI technology is also very well suited for intracellular delivery of nucleic acids, such as RNA therapeutics. By releasing nucleic acid compounds from endosomes where they are trapped following administration, PCI addresses one of the major bottlenecks facing this emerging and exciting field. PCI Biotech follows a strategy to create value by improving the effect of existing cancer drugs and by realising the large potential in new therapeutics. http://pcibiotech.no

About Ultimovacs
Ultimovacs is a small pharmaceutical company developing novel immunotherapy against cancer. The leading product is UV1, a therapeutic cancer vaccine directed against human telomerase (hTERT). The vaccine is a result of many years of preclinical and clinical research at the Norwegian Radium Hospital. UV1 is a synthetic peptide vaccine. The peptides included in the vaccine is based on observation of immune responses in patients with advanced malignant disease surviving several years after vaccination with a hTERT based therapeutic cancer vaccine. The company is currently performing three clinical trials with UV1. Two trials are documenting safety and the vaccines ability to activate the immune system against cancer cells expressing the hTERT fragments that are the components of the vaccine when given on top of standard treatment in prostate cancer and lung cancer. A third clinical trial is assessing safety and clinical outcomes when combining UV1 with ipilimumab in patients with malignant melanoma. http://ultimovacs.com

Cancer Crosslinks 2016 will be streamed

Cancer Crosslinks 2016 features a really interesting program. For those of you that may not take part of the actual conference in the Oslo Cancer Cluster Innovation Park, you may watch the whole program at your computer as we will live stream from 9:00 – 16:30.

Over 240 people from all over Norway have signed up for this years Cancer Crosslinks. The program focuses on immuno-oncology and features strong international thought leaders as presenters. Cancer Crosslinks is hosted by Oslo Cancer Cluster and sponsored by BMS and Janssen.

 

 

 

Cancer Crosslinks 2016 features thought leaders in immuno-oncology

Cancer Crosslinks 2016 on January 14 offers you an exciting program with international keynote speakers who made and make major contributions to advance immunotherapies against cancer. Already more than 120 delegates have signed up, but we have room for many more in the Kaare Norum Auditorium at Oslo Cancer Cluster Innovation Park. The conference is sponsored by BMS and Janssen.

 

 

The main theme for Cancer Crosslinks 2016 is: «The transversal impact of new treatments in Oncology and Hematology: tumor microenvironment, novel concepts, combinations and study design».

 

Some program highlights:

  • Professor Gordon Freeman, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Harvard Medical School, is one of the key persons behind today’s PD-1/ PD-L1 inhibitors. He will share his perspectives on PD-1 cancer immunotherapy. His talk will be complemented by case studies from Norway illustrating the broad impact of immune checkpoint inhibitors for a variety of cancers
  • Professor  Renier Brentjens, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, will shift the focus to hematological cancers and discuss the advancement of recombinant T-cell technologies including CAR-T-cell approaches for different indications. Norwegian experts will complement his talk with updates on novel immuno-oncology approaches being developed at UiO and OUS
  • Stefani Spranger from Professor Tom Gajewski’s lab, University of Chicago will provide the latest insights into the role of T-cell inflammed versus non-inflammed tumor microenvironment for immunotherapy
  • Last, but not least: a Norwegian patient will share his perspectives on the importance of novel cancer therapies

 

Travel expences
Participants working at hospitals and/or academic reserach centres whom have no sources for funding the participation will get flight or train ticket covered. How ever we do not cover local transportation to / from the airport. Flight or train tickets may be ordered by connecting to travel agency Berg-Hansen on e-mail:  bestilling@berg-hansen.no or phone  08050 between 08.00-17.00. The reference code is «OCC».

Targovax in agreement with Ludwig Cancer Research and the Cancer Research Institute (CRI)

Ludwig Cancer Research and the Cancer Research Institute (CRI) announced today an agreement with Oslo Cancer Cluster member Targovax to evaluate its experimental virotherapy, ONCOS-102, in early phase clinical trials testing the virotherapy in combination with other, potentially synergistic immunotherapies such as checkpoint inhibitors.

“We believe oncolytic virotherapy-in which engineered viruses are deployed against cancer cells-holds considerable promise, especially for boosting the efficacy and expanding the applicability of compatible immunotherapies,” said Jonathan Skipper, executive director of technology development at the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research. “This kind of clinical research is precisely what our collaboration with CRI is all about, and certainly a key component of our mission to apply our life-changing science as quickly as possible to cancer patients everywhere.”

ONCOS-102 is an engineered human serotype 5 adenovirus optimized to induce systemic anti-tumor T cell response in cancer patients. A gene encoding granulocyte-macrophage colony stimulating factor (GM-CSF), which was originally discovered by Ludwig researchers in Melbourne, is inserted into the virus genome and expressed as the virus replicates in tumor cells.

“Our partnership with Targovax and Ludwig is an important step forward in efforts to discover and develop optimally effective immunotherapy treatment regimens,” said Adam Kolom, managing director of CRI’s Clinical Accelerator and venture fund that will support this trial. “This strategic partnership is the latest in a series of CRI-Ludwig collaborations with pharmaceutical companies to test novel combination treatments, and will enable us to explore an innovative new way to create a more favorable tumor microenvironment for an immune attack on cancer.”

“We are delighted about this partnership and what may come out of it. Targovax R&D will have access to the well-known expertise and network of CRI and Ludwig Cancer Research, which provides us with new opportunities for combinatorial research. The focus will be on mechanistic synergies with clinical impact combining ONCOS-102 with other immune therapies to the potential benefit of patient care in the future,” says Magnus Jaderberg, chief medical officer at Targovax.

 

About Ludwig Cancer Research

Ludwig Cancer Research is an international collaborative network of acclaimed scientists that has pioneered cancer research and landmark discovery for more than 40 years. Ludwig combines basic science with the ability to translate its discoveries and conduct clinical trials to accelerate the development of new cancer diagnostics and therapies. Since 1971, Ludwig has invested nearly $2.7 billion in life-changing science through the not-for-profit Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research and the six U.S.-based Ludwig Centers. To learn more, visit www.ludwigcancerresearch.org.

About the Cancer Research Institute

The Cancer Research Institute (CRI), established in 1953, is the world’s only non-profit organization dedicated exclusively to transforming cancer patient care by advancing scientific efforts to develop new and effective immune system-based strategies to prevent, diagnose, treat, and cure cancer. Guided by a world-renowned Scientific Advisory Council that includes three Nobel laureates and 27 members of the National Academy of Sciences, CRI has invested $311 million in support of research conducted by immunologists and tumor immunologists at the world’s leading medical centers and universities, and has contributed to many of the key scientific advances that demonstrate the potential for immunotherapy to change the face of cancer treatment. Learn more at www.cancerresearch.org.

 

About Targovax

Targovax is a clinical stage immuno-oncology company developing targeted immunotherapy treatments for cancer patients. Targovax has a broad and diversified immune therapy portfolio and aim to become a leader in its area. The company is currently developing two complementary and highly targeted approaches in immuno-oncology:

Oncos 102 is a virus-based immunotherapy platform based on engineered oncolytic viruses armed with potent immune-stimulating transgenes targeting solid tumors. This treatment may reinstate the immune system’s capacity to recognize and attack cancer cells.

TG01 is a peptide-based immunotherapy platform targeting the difficult to treat RAS mutations found in more than 85% of pancreatic cancers and 20-30% of all cancers. Targovax works towards demonstrating that TG01 will prolong time to cancer progression, increase survival and improve safety and tolerability.

The product candidates will be developed in combination with multiple treatments in several cancer indications, including checkpoint inhibitors. Targovax also has a number of other cancer immune therapy candidates in the early stage of development. For more information visit our website at www.targovax.com.

 

For further information, please contact:

Rachel Steinhardt

Vice President of Communications, Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research

rsteinhardt@licr.org or +1-212-450-1582

 

Brian Brewer

Director of Marketing and Communications, Cancer Research Institute

bbrewer@cancerresearch.org or +1-212-688-7515 x242

 

Gunnar Gårdemyr

Chief Executive Officer, Targovax

ggardemyr@targovax.com or +41 798 340 585

HealthCap opens office in Oslo Cancer Cluster Incubator

HealthCap, a leading life science venture capital firm, has opened office in the newly established incubator in the Oslo Cancer Cluster Innovation Park. HealthCap also becomes a member of the Oslo Cancer Cluster.

 

HealthCap recognizes the emerging life sciences industry in Norway. “The strong environment created in the dedicated oncology cluster, bringing together all parts of the oncology value chain at the world renowned Radiumhospitalet, holds promise to play an important role in the development of the next generations of oncology treatments. We look forward to take part in and contribute to this important endeavor”, says Björn Odlander, managing partner of HealthCap.

HealthCap has retained Ludvik Sandnes to supervise the Norwegian operations. Ludvik Sandnes is a special advisor to HealthCap and has more than 40 years of experience from international corporate finance and asset management. He is currently the chairman of the listed Norwegian oncology company Nordic Nanovector AS.

 

HealthCap will host a seminar at the Oslo Cancer Cluster Innovation Park on December 9th at 12.30.
Please sign up here, the program will be published shortly.

The CEO of Oslo Cancer Cluster and Chairman of the Board of Oslo Cancer Cluster Incubator, Ketil Widerberg says “We are extremely happy to have HealthCap on board both in the Oslo Cancer Cluster and in the Incubator. HealthCap´s track record of investing in life science is impressing, and their competence and network will be valuable for further building a viable oncology industry based on excellent cancer research at Norwegian academic institutions.”

HealthCap invests in companies developing targeted therapies for rare diseases, cancer and genetic diseases, among others. HealthCap was the lead investor in the Norwegian oncology company Algeta, which was acquired by Bayer for USD 2.9 bn, and is the largest shareholder in the Norwegian oncology companies Nordic Nanovector AS and Targovax AS.

Purely focused on oncology, the Oslo Cancer Cluster Innovation Park and Incubator, will ensure that bright ideas in the lab benefit cancer patients faster than today.

 

For more information, please contact:

Björn Odlander, managing partner HealthCap,  email: bjorn.odlander@healthcap.eu, phone: +46 8 442 58 50

Johan Christenson, partner HealthCap, email: johan.christenson@healthcap.eu, phone: +46 8 442 58 50

Ketil Widerberg, CEO Oslo Cancer Cluster and Chairman of the Board Oslo Cancer Cluster Incubator, email: kw@oslocancercluster.no, phone: +47 915 77 990

 

Facts:

HealthCap:
HealthCap is a leading European venture capital firm investing exclusively and globally in life sciences. A cornerstone of the strategy is to invest in companies developing therapeutic interventions that have the potential to significantly improve patient outcomes. HealthCap backs companies developing targeted therapies for rare diseases, orphan drugs, cancer and genetic diseases, among others. The HealthCap team of ten partners, five of whom are MD PhDs, has established its reputation as one of Europe’s preeminent life science specialists amongst VCs and entrepreneurs. See more at: www.healthcap.eu

 

Oslo Cancer Cluster
Oslo Cancer Cluster is a strong biotech cluster well positioned in the global oncology industry. The cluster is particularly strong in immuno-oncology and works to release the potential that lies within Norwegian oncology registries and bio banks. 70 members make up the cluster and represent the entire oncology value chain. www.oslocancercluster.no

 

Oslo Cancer Cluster Incubator
Oslo Cancer Cluster Incubator offers lab and office space to researchers and biotechs developing cancer treatments, as well as companies offering competence, services and an international network crucial to succeed in this globally competitive area. The incubator´s over all aim is to develop more companies based on excellent cancer research as well as to contribute to their success. Today, more than X companies are part of the incubator. www.occincubator.com

 

Oslo Cancer Cluster Innovation Park AS

Total space: 36 000 m²

Vision: The vision of the Oslo Cancer Cluster Innovation Park is to create Europe’s leading environment for education, research and industry within oncology, while also shortening the time it takes to develop new cancer medication and diagnostics.

Tenants: Oslo University Hospital, The Institute for Cancer Genetics and Informatics, Norwegian Cancer Registry, Oslo Cancer Cluster SA, Oslo Cancer Cluster Incubator AS, The Norwegian Radium Hospital Research Foundation, The Oslo Hospital Pharmacy, Ullern High School and leading Norwegian biotech companies such as Ultimovacs and PCI Biotech.

Owners: OBOS, Industrifinans, Radium Hospital Foundation, Utstillingsplassen Eiendom, Oslo Cancer Cluster and Oslo Cancer Cluster Incubator.

Opened officially August 24 2015 by the Prime Minister of Norway, Erna Solberg.

www.occinnovationpark.com

 

Oslo Cancer Cluster Incubator: Hottest bioincubator in the Nordics

According to The European Biotech News Website, Oslo Cancer Cluster Incubator is ranked as the hottest bioincubator in the Nordics as well as the 6th hottest bioincubator in Europe. The Top 10 ranking is subject to several criteria. You may read the whole list here.

Oslo Cancer Cluster Incubator just opened its premises in the Oslo Cancer Cluster Innovation Park August this year and is home to around 20 companies,  instituitons and consultants.

The incubator´s ultimate goal is to contribute to the succesful commercialisation of cancer research performed in Norway. This will provide patients with new cancer treatments and at the same time build a much needed knowledge based health industry in Norway.

 

Oslo Innovation Week opening will be streamed

Oslo Innovation Week will be opened today, Monday October 12 at 12 o´clock. The opening is streamed and may be watched here: https://feat.fm/oiw/. Both the Minister of Finance Siv Jensen, and the Minister of Trade and Industry, Monica Mæland will be present at the opening to launch a new plan for Norwegian entrepreneurship. 

 

Oslo Innovation Week will go on the whole week – see all about it on the official website here: www.oiw.no. Follow and join discussions on Social Medias using #oiw.
At our Events page, you may see which seminars Oslo Cancer Cluster is engaged in.

 


In Norwegian:

Finansminister Siv Jensen og næringsminister Monica Mæland vil delta på åpningen av Oslo Innovation Week og lansere gode nyheter for alle Norges entreprenører og gründere.

For alle de som ikke har mulighet til å delta på selve åpningen i Operaen i Oslo så vil den bli streamet på:  https://feat.fm/oiw/. Sendingen starter mandag kl. 12. I statsbudsjettet foreslår regjeringen tiltak for tilsammen 400 millioner “for å få frem gode gründere”.  Hva vil statsrådene presentere? Delta i debatten og bli med live!

 

Photocure: First patient enrolled in Hexvix®/Cysview® Phase 3 study on bladder cancer

Oslo Cancer Cluster member Photocure announces that the first patient has been enrolled in the Hexvix/Cysview Market Expansion Phase 3 study on bladder cancer. The study will investigate the use of Hexvix/Cysview in the outpatient / surveillance setting and is designed to fulfill the FDA post marketing commitments. Results from the Phase 3 study are expected to be available in 2017.

The study is a prospective, multicenter Phase 3 study comparing the detection and potential positive impact on patient management of bladder cancer in the outpatient setting with Hexvix/Cysview using Blue Light enabled flexible cystoscopy versus white light flexible cystoscopy. Eighteen top rated cancer hospitals in the USA will participate in the study, which is planned to enroll approximately 360 patients with non-muscle invasive bladder cancer.

There are approximately 1.2 million flexible cystoscopy procedures conducted on a yearly basis in the United States. The use of Blue Light Flexible Cystoscopy with Hexvix/Cysview in the outpatient / surveillance setting could allow Urologists to detect recurrences at an earlier stage, which is of great clinical benefit. Furthermore, as has been demonstrated with the current use of Hexvix/Cysview during bladder cancer resection with blue light rigid cystoscopes, the addition of Hexvix/Cysview in the surveillance of bladder cancer patients may lead to better and earlier patient management decisions resulting in improved clinical outcomes and health economic savings.

Dr. Raj Pruthi, Professor and Chair, Department of Urology, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill said: “The positive benefits of Hexvix/Cysview are well documented in numerous trials for patients undergoing bladder cancer resections during cystoscopy examination in the operating room. We are looking forward to conducting the study with Blue Light Flexible Cystoscopy with Hexvix/Cysview to confirm the benefits of this technology also in the outpatient setting. Early detection of more lesions is expected to result in better treatment decisions as well as more appropriate referrals and follow-up regimens, which in turn will reduce the burden on patients and the health care system.”

Kjetil Hestdal, President & CEO said: “This is an important milestone for Photocure as we seek to expand the use of Hexvix/Cysview into the bladder cancer surveillance market. Enabling Blue Light flexible cystoscopy with Hexvix/Cysview in the surveillance setting will allow patients with non-muscle invasive bladder cancer access to optimal treatment earlier, resulting in improved long-term benefits for these patients. While this trial is ongoing in the USA, we will be obtaining additional clinical and health economic data in EU from the use of Hexvix/Cysview in the same setting in order to optimize best clinical practices and patient outcomes.”

For more information about the clinical trial: https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT02560584

 

 

About Photocure ASA

Photocure ASA, headquartered in Oslo, Norway, is a specialty pharmaceutical company and world leader in photodynamic technology. Based on our unique proprietary Photocure Technology® platform, Photocure develops and commercializes highly selective and effective solutions in disease areas with high unmet medical need, such as bladder cancer, HPV and precancerous cervical lesions, colorectal cancer and skin conditions. Our aim is to provide solutions that can improve health outcomes for patients worldwide. Photocure is listed on the Oslo Stock Exchange (OSE: PHO). Information about Photocure is available at www.photocure.com.

About Hexvix®/Cysview®

Hexvix®/Cysview® (hexaminolevulinate hydro-chloride) is an innovative breakthrough technology in the diagnosis and management of non-muscle-invasive bladder cancer. It is designed to selectively target malignant cells in the bladder and induce fluorescence during a cystoscopic procedure using a blue-light enabled cystoscope. Using Hexvix®/Cysview® as an adjunct to standard white-light cystoscopy enables the urologist to better detect and remove lesions, leading to a reduced risk of recurrence. Hexvix®/Cysview® is approved in Europe, Canada and the USA.

This information is subject of the disclosure requirements acc. to §5-12 vphl (Norwegian Securities Trading Act)

 K Teams Boston: 9-20 November, 2015.

Opportunity for Oslo Cancer Cluster SMB´s: K Teams is a two week, intensive entrepreneurial training program in Boston and Cambridge. It is a great way to get a company started in the US. Please go to the following link for more information: http://kendall-teams.com/

The team behind the program is a seasoned, experienced group who have helped others companies make a successful entry into the US.  Boston is one of the most vibrant medical technology and bio/pharma regions in the US.

For more info:

Ron Sutherland, Launch in US Alliance: +1 617-407-0722 // rsutherland@launchinus.com

EU Calls 2016-2017 just published

The draft SC1 Work Programme for 2016-17 has been pre-published at https://ec.europa.eu/programmes/horizon2020/en/draft-work-programmes-2016-17.

 

Please note that this draft is published for transparency purposes and is not yet legally valid.

The adoption and the publication of the work programme by the Commission are expected in mid-October 2015. Only the adopted work programme will have legal value. This adoption will be announced on the Horizon 2020 website and on the Participant Portal.

Vaccibody with vaccination of first patient

Vaccibody AS announced today vaccination of the first patient in its multicentre trial VB C-01 – an exploratory, open-label, multicenter phase I/IIa study VB10.16 immunotherapy for the treatment of high grade Cervical Intraepithelial Neoplasia (CIN 2/3) caused by human papillomavirus 16 (HPV 16).

 

Patients will receive intramuscular vaccinations of VB10.16 at three different time points. Two different dosing schedules will be evaluated during the first phase of the study in patients diagnosed with CIN 2, the best vaccination schedule will then be evaluated in the second phase in both CIN 2 and CIN 3 patients.

The primary objective of the study is to evaluate the safety and tolerability of three doses of 3 mg VB10.16. The secondary objectives are to assess T cell mediated immune responses in the peripheral blood as well as in the pre-malignant tissue of the CIN 2/3 lesions and to evaluate early signs of efficacy by means of HPV clearance and CIN regression.

Martin Bonde, CEO of Vaccibody, commented: We are pleased to announce commencement of patient treatment in this first clinical trial with Vaccibody’s lead product VB10.16. Surgery is currently the only available therapy to remove abnormal cervical lesions caused by human papillomavirus and thereby stop the progression to cervical cancer. We are hopeful that VB10.16 immunotherapy can help change this treatment paradigm by offering a safe and efficacious alternative in the form of a therapeutic HPV vaccine.

Principal investigator,  Prof. Dr. med. Karl Ulrich Petry, Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology Klinikum Wolfsburg commented:  The scientific approach of this well designed clinical study offers the chance to get a thorough understanding on how patients respond to VB10.16 immunotherapy. The first dosing of a patient has just been performed successfully in our hospital . We are convinced that patients with CIN 2 and CIN 3 will be very motivated to participate in the study to test this therapeutic vaccination as it might offer a non-invasive treatment option avoiding the side effects associated with surgical excision of the affected tissue and potentially also cure the underlying HPV infection and prevent recurrence. Furthermore, VB10.16 could also protect from other HPV16 induced cancers.

 

About VB10.16

The company’s lead product, VB10.16, is a therapeutic DNA vaccine developed to treat human papillomavirus type 16 (HPV16) induced pre-malignancies and malignancies.

About Cervical Intraepithelial Neoplasia (CIN) and Cervical Cancer

Per year approximately 530,000 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer worldwide and over 275,000 women die of the disease annually. Invasive cervical cancer is preceded by a long phase of pre-invasive disease called Cervical Intraepithelial Neoplasia (CIN). Globally the number of high grade lesions (CIN 2/3) the immediate precursors to malignancy, is estimated to be in the range of 10 million.

Virtually all cervical cancers are caused by high risk HPV types. Among the different high risk HPV types known, HPV16 has been reported to be the most common genotype in high grade cervical intraepithelial neoplasia. It can be detected in up to 60 % of all cervical cancers, especially in younger women and it has also been found to play an essential role in the development of several other cancer types (approximately 90% of anal cancers; 40% of penile, vaginal, and vulvar cancers; 25% of oral cavity cancers and 35% of oropharyngeal cancers).

Current standard therapy for CIN 2/3 varies between countries and regions and often involves surgical removal of the affected tissue. These invasive procedures are associated with bleeding, infection, cervical stenosis, scarring and most importantly pre-term deliveries in subsequent pregnancies. As a result, there is a significant need for an effective therapeutic vaccine to treat existing HPV infection and associated pre-malignancies and malignancies of the cervix and thereby prevent the development of cervical cancer caused by human papillomavirus.

About Vaccibody AS

Vaccibody is a biopharmaceutical company dedicated to the discovery and development of novel immunotherapies, prophylactic and therapeutic vaccines which target cancer and infectious diseases, for human and veterinary use. Vaccibody’s lead program is focused on VB10.16, a therapeutic DNA vaccine against HPV16 induced pre-malignancies and malignancies. The first-in-human study will evaluate the safety and immunogenicity of VB10.16 in women with high grade cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (HSIL; CIN 2/3).

 

 

 

BerGen Bio, Nexstim and AMRA receive Nordic Stars 2015 Awards

BerGen Bio, AMRA and Nexstim have been announced as the recipients of the Nordic Stars 2015 Awards. The awards were presented at the conclusion of the Nordic Life Science Days in Stockholm, which again set a new record for attendance, with over 1000 delegates from 31 countries, establishing itself as the premier Nordic life sciences event.

Nordic Stars Awards were introduced in 2013 in special recognition of life science companies in the Nordic region demonstrating outstanding innovation and entrepreneurial skills.

“This year’s winner of the Nordic Stars Awards are clearly future-­‐oriented and committed to working in new ways to bring medical innovations to patients. They are both role models for others and an example of the innovation capacity in the life sciences in the Nordic countries “, says Jonas Ekstrand, Director General SwedenBIO.

This year’s winners are:

BerGen Bio
Norwegian BerGenBio’s commitment to develop companion diagnostics and first-­‐in-­‐ class drugs targeting the cellular processes that make cancer cells immune-­‐evasive, drug resistant and metastatic is a great example of what the future might hold. With focus on ground-­‐breaking therapies and precision medicine BerGenBio is a leading example and   a Nordic Star. www.bergenbio.com

Nexstim
Norwegian NexStim’s development and commercialization of a non-­‐invasive technology to monitor and modulate brain function provides a good example of how an innovative combination of new and established treatment modalities could add significant value to patients. NextStims strategic management shows how to step by step bring an innovation to the market. www.nexstim.com

Amra
Swedish AMRA’s exciting technology that transforms MRI images into body composition measurements provides a solid basis for precision medicine approaches in the area of metabolic diseases. With innovative collaborations, AMRA shows how the combination of technology and cutting edge management brings new knowledge to the world. www.amra.se

 

Ekstrand also reflected on a highly successful two days: “NLSDays has continued to grow and established a strong reputation. We are particularly pleased to see the high level of international interest, which is a recognition of the thriving entrepreneurial life sciences environment here and we look forward to continuing to develop and expand NLSDays over the coming years. ”

The theme of the conference “The New Value Chain and the Future” was also well received, as was the focus on three trends -­‐ Digitalization, Precision and Preventive Medicine and Breakthrough Therapies. These are described in a brief report co-­‐written by SwedenBIO and Arthur D. Little that also outlines key factors for success for companies in these areas in the future.

 

Nordic Life Science Days 2016 will be held September 13-­‐15 in Stockholm.

Nordic Life Science Days 2015 in brief:

  • Registered Delegates: 1026
  • Registered Companies: 680
  • Countries Represented: 31 Partnering Meeting Requests: 9514 Partnering Meetings Scheduled: 1957 Licensing Opportunities: 541

NLSDays was founded in 2012 and has grown rapidly to become the largest Nordic partnering conference for the global life science industry. Among the investors and big pharma attending NLSDays 2015 were AbbVie, Alexion, Almi Invest, Astellas, AstraZeneca, Bayer HealthCare, Boehringer Ingelheim, Bristol-­‐Myers Squibb, Cadila Pharma, Johnson & Johnson, HealthCap, Industrifonden, Karolinska Development, Merck-­‐MSD, Novartis, Pfizer, Pierre Fabre, P.U.LS. AB, Recipharm, Roche, Seventure Partners  and SR-­‐One.

In addition to partnering, NLSDays also offers an exhibition and a seminar program. Speakers include senior representatives from the global life science companies, investors, and academic leaders who will all share their expertise and views for the future.

 

 

 

 

NLSDays 2015: Meet international life science leaders and discuss the sector’s future at the Nordic region’s largest partnering meeting

NLSDays September 9-10 at Stockholm Waterfront is the Nordic region’s premier life science event. The global life science sector is undergoing major structural changes, and as part of a strong established hub, companies in Sweden and the Nordic countries are of great interest when international investors and corporations are looking for new partners.

The entire value chain from basic research to the introduction of new therapies is subject to transformation – not least due to rapid developments in digital health. Life science companies therefore need to find new ways to collaborate and fund their projects. Since the Nordic region offers a modern, competitive environment for academia and research companies alike, the region has become highly attractive for the global life science industry.

  • NLSDays has become the most important meeting place for global investors and corporations that are looking for new collaborations in the Nordic region. The event is on course for record numbers and deals such as the recent one between Alligator Bioscience and Janssen Biotech which illustrates that Swedish companies offer major value to partners, says Jonas Ekstrand, CEO SwedenBIO, the Swedish national life science industry organization which founded the event three years ago.

Overall, the life science sector is currently very active in the Nordic countries. For example, the Oslo Cancer Cluster Innovation Park, an investment of around 100 million Euros opens today (24 August). Furthermore, AstraZeneca recently announced a Euros 260 million investment in a new plant for bio-pharmaceutical production and from January 2014, 18 life science companies across all subsectors from medtech to biopharma have been listed on Nasdaq Nordic at a combined value of about Euros 250 million (Source Nasdaq). Furthermore, initiatives and companies in new areas such as personalized medicine, digital health and outcomes based provision are emerging at an accelerating pace.

During Nordic Life Science Days 2015 the main theme is “The New Value Chain”. The 2 day program covers several sessions in which international life science leaders will discuss strategies on how new partnerships can be established and how medical research and the life science industry in the Nordics can contribute.

Super Sessions from the program:

  • International Investors (9 September at 11.30 – 12.30)

International life science investors talk about their investment models and what they look for from entrepreneurs.

  • Personalized Healthcare – Matching Medicines to Patients (September 10 at 08:45 – 09-45)

How will big data and new diagnostic methods impact the future of medical research and treatment modalities? Listen to how the Digital Doctor Watson can revolutionize health care.

  • Oncology 2025 (10 September 11.30 – 12.30)

Immuno-oncology is hotter than ever and there is an ongoing competition between the big global companies to take on the most promising projects. Representatives from several of the major players talk about their strategies.

Currently, 800 delegates are registered for this year’s NLSDays, which is 33% more than at the corresponding time last year. This strongly indicate that the meeting will attract over 1,000 participants, outnumbering last year’s number of delegates.

The conference is organized September 9-10, 2015 at Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Nils Ericssons Plan 4 in Stockholm. More info on www.nlsdays.com.

 

About NLSDays

Founded in 2012 the Nordic Life Science Days has grown rapidly to become the largest Nordic partnering conference for the global life science industry. In 2014, 890 delegates from 28 countries attended the meeting. The 580 companies attending offered 490 licensing opportunities in the partnering system and during the two days 1600 one-on-one meetings were scheduled. Among the investors and big pharma already registered for the meeting in September 2015 are AbbVie, Alexion, Almi Invest, Astellas, AstraZeneca, Bayer HealthCare, Boehringer Ingelheim, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Cadila Pharma, Johnson & Johnson, HealthCap, Industrifonden, Karolinska Development, Merck-MSD, Novartis, Pfizer, Pierre Fabre, P.U.LS. AB, Recipharm, Roche, Seventure Partners, SR-One.

In addition to partnering, NLSDays also offers an exhibition and a seminar program with 10 super session and four topic specific workshops. Speakers include senior representatives from the global life science companies, investors, and academic leaders who will all share their expertise and views for the future.

About SwedenBIO

SwedenBIO who is the founder and organizer of the Nordic Life Science Days is the Swedish life science industry organization. Our nearly 200 members operate across all sub-sectors from pharmaceutical, biotechnology, medical technology to diagnostics. SwedenBIO serves to the benefit the entire life science industry in Sweden and is a member-driven, private, non-profit organization. The main objective is to improve the conditions for the life science industry for the benefit of industry growth and business development.

 

Oncology Super Session in Stockholm

Oslo Cancer Cluster is hosting a Super Session at the Nordic Life Science Days in Stockholm. International thought leaders will discuss current game changing innovations and their impact on the industry in the years ahead.

Oncology is at the forefront of realizing the promises of precision medicine. Huge and complex datasets are exploited for novel drug development as well as for informed and real-time care decisions. Emerging Cancer immunotherapies represent a paradigm shift for cancer treatment triggering a global R&D race and novel partnerships. Furthermore, the convergence of the genetics and digital revolution creates novel types of products, companies and growth opportunities transforming the sector.

 

Moderator: Mr. Richard Godfrey, CEO, BergenBio, Norway

Session Outline:

 

Min Topic Speaker
5 Introduction by moderator ·        Dr. Richard Godfrey, CEO BerGenBio

 

10 Topic 1 –global company – perspectives from industry leader – Precision Medicine ·        Dr. Vaios Karanikas, Senior Biomarker and Experimental Medicine Leader, Tumor Immunology, Roche Pharmaceutical Research and Early Development, Innovation Center Zurich
10 Topic 2 – Digital Health company – Big Data / artificial intelligence -> impact on cancer R&D and care ·        Dr. Anthony Bak, Principal Data Scientist, Ayasdi
10 Topic 3 – global company – perspectives from industry leader – Immuno-Oncology ·        Dr. Tim Fisher, Global Lead, Immuno-Oncology / Oncology, Search & Evaluation, Bristol-Myers Squibb
25 Panel Discussion ·        All speakers, joined by Dr. Erik Lund, Director, Worldwide Licensing at MSD (Merck & Co., Inc.)

 

Target Audience: Start-ups, Biotechs, Pharma, investors, academic innovators, TTOs

 

Targovax and Oncos Therapeutics join forces to create a Nordic leader within immuno-oncology

Targovax and Oncos Therapeutics join forces to create a Nordic leader within immuno-oncology and contemplate a private placement of NOK 125–150 million to fund the combined business

Tagovax has entered into an agreement with the shareholders of Oncos Therapeutics to acquire the shares of Oncos with settlement in Targovax shares. The combined company with multiple assets in research and development will be a Nordic leader within immuno-oncology. The new company will have a strong senior management team and be financially backed by reputable institutional investors with sector specialist HealthCap as the largest shareholder.

To fund the combined company, Targovax contemplates to raise NOK 125-150 million through a private placement directed towards Norwegian and international investors, and has already received indications from leading institutional investors for a substantial amount, including but not limited to a NOK 26 million commitment from HealthCap, NOK 25 million from Datum Invest AS and NOK 5 million from the Norwegian Radium Hospital Research Foundation. In addition, the Private Placement is directed towards the 24 employees of Targovax and Oncos and their respective subsidiaries, and companies controlled by any such employees.

 

Rationale for the Transaction

Targovax and Oncos—based in Oslo and Helsinki, respectively—are both clinical-stage biotechnology companies with broad pipelines addressing the immuno-oncology market, which currently is quite modest, but is expected to grow to USD 30-35 billion over the next decade.

By combining Targovax and Oncos, a larger and more visible Nordic immuno-oncology player with a more extensive portfolio will be created. Furthermore, the combination of two highly competent and complementary organizations will promote more efficient execution and accelerate the development of ongoing and future programs.

Clinical results to date confirm the safety and the mechanisms of action for both technology platforms. Safety data from Targovax and Oncos programs have been collected on approximately 250 and 290 patients, respectively. Both companies have completed Phase I and are now in Phase II development, or about to enter Phase II development, with broad pipelines, and both utilize an immuno-oncology approach that is highly suitable for combination therapies. Clinical programs in several indications will provide increased opportunities for newsflow over the next 18 months.

“The combination of Targovax and Oncos creates a major Nordic player within immuno-oncology. We will have a wide array of programs in the pipeline and multiple shots at goal. The companies’ complementary technologies will provide a unique platform for the development of cutting-edge immunotherapies, and we will have a higher chance of success, thus offering investors an even more compelling opportunity. I am excited to lead an organization of highly skilled professionals with deep industry experience”, said Gunnar Gårdemyr, Chief Executive Officer of Targovax.

 

Senior Executives and Board of Directors

After the Transaction, the highly experienced senior management team will consist of the following members:

  • Gunnar Gårdemyr (Chief Executive Officer) has more than 30 years of international experience in the pharmaceutical and biotech industry from companies such as Nycomed and Takeda
  • Magnus Jäderberg (Chief Medical Officer) has more than 25 years of experience from R&D functions and was previously CMO at Bristol-Myers Squibb (Europe)
  • Øystein Soug (Chief Financial Officer) has prior experience as the Chief Financial Officer of Algeta and in positions with the Orkla Group
  • Jon Amund Eriksen (Chief Operating Officer) was the co-founder of Targovax and has 35 years of R&D experience in the pharmaceutical and biotech industry, of which 25 years were within immuno-oncology

After the Transaction, the proposed Board of Directors will consist of the following members:

  • Jónas Einarsson (Chairman of the Board of Directors), Chief Executive Officer of the Norwegian Radium Hospital Research Foundation
  • Johan Christenson (Board Member), Partner at HealthCap
  • Per Samuelsson (Board Member), Partner at HealthCap
  • Lars Lund-Roland (Board Member), CEO of Bringwell, with more than 25 years of experience from various executive positions within Merck
  • Bente-Lill Romøren (Board Member), Board Member of the Norwegian Radium Hospital Research Foundation and Chairman of Farmastat and Photocure
  • Robert Burns (Board Member), Chairman of Haemostatix, previously CEO of 4-Antibody, Affitech, and Celldex Therapeutics, all three being early companies in the immuno-oncology space

 

The Transaction and the Private Placement

Targovax has entered into an agreement with the shareholders of Oncos to acquire the shares of Oncos with settlement in Targovax shares. After completion of the Transaction, the shareholders of Oncos will own 50 per cent of the combined company. The shareholders of Oncos will in aggregate receive 9,429,404 new Targovax shares that are to be issued at NOK 25.00 per share.

Targovax further contemplates to raise NOK 125-150 million in equity through the Private Placement to fund the combined business. The subscription price in the Private Placement is set to NOK 25.00 per share. The application period commences today on 11 June 2015 at 09:00 (CET) and will close on 19 June 2014 at 16:00 hours (CET). The Company, together with the Joint Global Coordinators (as defined below), reserve the right to close the application period at any time at their sole discretion, at short notice. The minimum order size and allocation in the Private Placement has been set to offer shares worth the NOK or share equivalent of EUR 100,000. The minimum order size and allocation amount does not apply to Eligible Employees. The allocation of shares will be determined at the end of the application period. The final allocation will be made at the Board’s sole discretion.

An updated presentation of the Company and the Transaction is available on the Company’s web site, www.targovax.com.

ABG Sundal Collier, Arctic Securities and DNB Markets are acting as Joint Global Coordinators and Bookrunners for the Private Placement (the “Joint Global Coordinators”). DNB Markets has acted as financial adviser to Targovax in relation to the Transaction. Guggenheim Securities, LLC has acted as financial adviser to Oncos in relation to the Transaction.

 

About Targovax
Targovax is an Oslo-area based global biotechnology company, dedicated to the design and development of immunotherapy vaccines for patients with RAS-mutated cancers. Established in 2010 by the inventors of this RAS-targeted technology and the Norwegian Radium Hospital Research Foundation in Oslo, Targovax has over 25 years of direct experience and has seen more than 250 patients treated with this promising technology.

 

About Oncos
Oncos is a privately funded clinical-stage biotechnology company focused on the development and commercialization of targeted cancer immunotherapy. Oncos’ product candidates induce a tailored response by the immune system directed at each patient’s unique cancer cells. Oncos’ lead product candidate, ONCOS-102, has successfully completed Phase I clinical studies. Additionally, a promising pipeline has been developed using Oncos’ patented adenovirus-based cancer immunotherapy platform, for the treatment of several cancer types, including soft tissue sarcoma, ovarian cancer and mesothelioma. The novel immunotherapy platform is based on engineered oncolytic viruses armed with potent immune-stimulating transgenes.

 

 

Centre for Cancer Biomedicine in Nature – again

In a recent article in Nature, published on-line 3rd June, PhD student Marina Vietri and her co-workers in Harald Stenmark’s group at Centre for Cancer Biomedicine and Institute for Cancer Research have uncovered a new cellular mechanism that contributes to keep our genome intact.

The authors of the Nature paper. Front row, from left: Kay O. Schink, Harald Stenmark, Marina Vietri (first author), Coen Campsteijn (co-corresponding author). Middle row, from left: Camilla Raiborg, Liliane Christ, Sebastian W. Schultz. Back row, from left: Andreas Brech, Catherine Sem Wegner, Sigrid B. Thoresen. Photo: Tore Skotland.

This is the second article in Nature the group has published the last two months – you may read the other article here.
NRK Viten has published this article about the research: Norske forskarar har avdekka mysterium bak celledeling

The research by Vietri and her colleagues explains how the cell protects the DNA from damage during cell division: During cell division, the nuclear envelope breaks down so that duplicated chromosomes can be separated by the microtubule-containing spindle apparatus.  Upon completion of this process, in anaphase, new nuclear envelopes are formed around the two daughter nuclei, and the mitotic spindle is disassembled by a mechanism that has not been known.

Vietri and her co-workers noticed that certain subunits of a protein complex known as endosomal sorting complex required for transport (ESCRT) accumulate around the reforming daughter nuclei in anaphase. This observation made them uncover a mechanism whereby ESCRT proteins coordinate nuclear envelope sealing and mitotic spindle disassembly. The ESCRT proteins are recruited to points in the reforming nuclear envelope that are intersected by microtubules. Here, they recruit an enzyme, Spastin, that severs microtubules. The remaining holes in the nuclear envelope are then sealed by the membrane-healing activity of the ESCRT proteins.

Vietri and co-workers also addressed what happens if this process goes wrong. By interfering with normal ESCRT functions during anaphase, the researchers observed that DNA becomes damaged, so evidently the novel mechanism of spindle disassembly and nuclear envelope sealing is important for keeping our genome safe.

Because genome instability is strongly connected to cancer development, it will now be interesting to examine which roles the ESCRT machinery play in preventing cancer.

 

Links:
Spastin and ESCRT-III coordinate mitotic spindle disassembly and nuclear envelope sealing
Marina Vietri, Kay O. Schink, Coen Campsteijn, Catherine Sem Wegner, Sebastian W. Schultz, Liliane Christ, Sigrid B. Thoresen, Andreas Brech, Camilla Raiborg & Harald Stenmark
Nature (2015) doi:10.1038/nature14408
Published online 03 June 2015

Nature | News & Views:
Cell biology: Nuclear dilemma resolved
Brian Burke
Nature (2015) doi:10.1038/nature14527
Published online 03 June 2015

www.nrk.no/viten:
Norske forskarar har avdekka mysterium bak celledeling

Vaccibody part of project that has successfully landed EU Horizon 2020 funding

Oslo Cancer Cluster member Vaccibody AS wil take part in SAPHIR, a 4 year collaborative research project that has succesfully raised 78 million NOK from the EU Horizon 2020 program. SAPHIR brings together interdisciplinary expertise from 14 academic institutions, 5 small and medium-sized enterprises  and 2 pharmaceutical companies. The project aims to improve animal production and health through development of improved vaccination strategies. 

Vaccibody is dedicated to the development of novel immunotherapies and vaccines for prevention and treatment of cancer and infectious diseases for human and veterinary purposes. For SAPHIR, Vaccibody will provide vaccines against Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome Virus for evaluation in pigs. Upon successful completion of the SAPHIR project, Vaccibody will have increased expertise and network within the veterinary vaccine and administration field.

Tom Pike, Chairman and Acting CEO of Vaccibody, commented: “This is another example of how Vaccibody intends to broaden the use of our platform technology in collaboration with acknowledged partners. We recently attended the kick-off meeting in Paris and we are proud to be a part of this international consortium with expertise within veterinary vaccine development. The support from EU for collaborative initiatives like SAPHIR will allow Vaccibody to expand its experience of the technology within the veterinary field while the company remains fully focused on the clinical development of it’s lead drug candidate, VB10.16 for treatment of HPV16 induced precancer and cancer.”

 

About Vaccibody AS

Vaccibody is a biopharmaceutical company dedicated to the discovery and development of novel immunotherapies, prophylactic and therapeutic vaccines which target cancer and infectious diseases, for human and veterinary use. Vaccibody’s lead drug candidate VB10.16 is a therapeutic DNA vaccine against HPV16 induced pre-malignancies and malignancies. The company is currently entering it’s first-in-man study that will evaluate the safety and immunogenicity of VB10.16 in women with high grade cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (HSIL; CIN 2/3).

 

NLS Days – time to sign up

Oslo Cancer Cluster is one of the supporting organizations for this years Nordic Life Science Days in Stockholm. Members of the cluster benefit from special rates on participation plus we host an Oncology 2025 Super Session.

In collaboration with LMI, Nansen Neuroscience Network and other healthcare industry actors in Norway, Oslo Cancer Cluster will attend NLSDays to promote Norwegian Healthcare Industry and the cluster members.

Questions regarding the conference may be directed to Jutta Heix, International Advisor or Elisabeth Kirkeng Andersen, Head of Communicaton.

Read the latest newsletter from NLSDays 2015 below or online

The 3rd annual Nordic Life Science Days partnering conference will take place September 9–10 in Stockholm, Sweden, at the Waterfront. NLSDays Super Sessions and Workshops feature top industry leaders and executives speaking on relevant trends to industry decision makers.


Already 50+ Company Presentations confirmed

Presenting at NLSDays is the perfect chance to increase your visibility and attract more partners. Pitch your company’s profile, strategy and objectives to a global audience. Be seen by BD executives, investors, analysts, media and get more activity in partneringONE®. Still a few 6mn and 12mn available slots, don’t miss the opportunity to book your presentation when registering.


Already 50+ Exhibitors confirmed
NLSDays brings hundreds of Life Science Industry leaders from 30+ countries together for 2 days of intensive networking. As an exhibitor, you will reach high-level executives and influential decision makers who come to NLSDays to meet with new players in the industry and initiate partnerships. Still a few 4sqm, 6sqm and 9sqm available stands, don’t miss the opportunity to book yours now.


Oncology 2025 Super Session
Hosted by Oslo Cancer Cluster. Oncology is at the forefront of realizing the promises of precision medicine. Huge and complex datasets are exploited for novel drugs devolpment as well as for informed and real-time care decisions. Emerging cancer immunotherapies represent a paradigm shift for cancer treatment triggening a global R&D race and novel partnerships. Furthermore, the convergence of the genetics and digital revolution creates novel types of products, companies and growth opportunities transforming the sector.


International Investors Super Session

Hosted by Business Sweden, co-hosted by Industrifonden and HealthCap. Meet the investors actively investing in European Life Sciences companies. What are they looking for? What are the learnings in biotech and medtech investing over the past decade? How are these learnings being applied in current investments decisions? How is the financial climate in Life Sciences today?


Member of a supporting organization?
Since Oslo  Cancer Cluster is a supporting organization, members get a discount. Send an e-mail to Elisabeth Kirkeng Andersen, Head of Communicaton to get the Promotion Code and benefit from discount on all registration fees. Remember that Regular Rate registration period ends on June 30, 2015.


Interested in
sponsoring, exhibiting, presenting ? Contact: Olivier Duchamp, olivier.duchamp@bionordic.org

Large Oslo Cancer Cluster delegation to BIO2015

More than 15 Oslo Cancer Cluster members will be present at BIO2015 in Philadelphia in June. BIO is the world´s largest biotech fair and a very important partnering event for the cluster.

The companies attending BIO from the cluster are: BerGenBio, Lifandis, Lytix Biopharma, Nextera, Nordic Nanovector, Normetrix, Pharmalink Oncology, Inven2, BTO, Targovax, Ultimovacs, Vaccibody, The Radium Hospital Research Foundation, Chiltern and DNB Healthcare.

International Advisor Jutta Heix will represent Oslo Cancer Cluster Managment Team.

International Cancer Cluster Showcase
Oslo Cancer Cluster will also this year arrange International Cancer Cluster Showcase at BIO, together with other world-leading cancer clusters.  New partners are OBN, UK with a strong international investor network and the Wistar Institute from Philadelphia as local partner.

Member companies pitching at the International Cancer Cluster Showcase are Inven2, Ultimovacs and Nordic Nanovector.

Inven2, Norway´s largest TTO, will pitch their portfolio of early projects which is really strong in immuno-oncology, Ultimovacs will present the clinical development of their universal cancer vaccine, whilst Nordic Nanovector will present the clinical development of their targeted radiopharmaceutical treatment of lymphoma. Nordic Nanovector went public this March with one of the biggest IPO´s in European biotech so far this year.

We are very proud to have two Oslo Cancer Cluster members sponsoring the International Cancer Cluster Showcase this year: Chiltern and DNB Healthcare.

DNB Healthcare is also hosting a special healthcare event in New York on June 12 prior to BIO.

 

Ultimovacs, Inven2 and Nordic Nanovector will present at ICCS

Oslo Cancer Cluster will for the 4th time arrange International Cancer Cluster Showcase, ICCS in collaboration with leading cluster partners from Europe and North America. 20 oncology biotechs will pitch their latest innovations and partnering opportunities.

Member companies pitching at ICCS are Inven2, Ultimovacs and Nordic Nanovector:

  • Ultimovacs will present the clinical development of their universal cancer vaccine
  • Inven2, Norway´s largest TTO, will pitch highlights from their portfolio which is particularly strong in immuno-oncology
  • Nordic Nanovector will present their lead clinical-stage product opportunity Betalutin™, the first in a new class of Antibody-Radionuclide-Conjugates (ARCs).Nordic Nanovector went public this March with one of the biggest IPO´s in European biotech so far this year.

Below you may find some more information on this years edition of ICCS and BIO2015.

International Cancer Cluster Showcase 2015, June 15th, 2015 – Philadelphia Convention Center

General BIO Info:

  • BIO 2015 takes place in Philadelphia. From what we hear the hotels are filling up, so be sure to book your housing soon if you are attending
  • Oslo Cancer Cluster will not feature a booth this year, but International Advisor Jutta Heix will be present at BIO and participate in partnering meetings

 

 

PCI Biotech starts collaboration in siRNA therapeutics

PCI Biotech, a Norwegian cancer focused biopharmaceutical company, announced that it is initiating a pre-clinical research collaboration with RXi Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: RXII). RXi is an American biotechnology company focused on discovering and developing innovative therapeutics, that address high-unmet medical needs primarily in the area of dermatology and ophthalmology.

The partnership is governed by a pre-clinical research collaboration agreement. Initially, the purpose of the pre-clinical research collaboration is to utilize the companies’ complementary scientific platforms to explore potential synergies.

In brief the pre-clinical research collaboration will evaluate technology compatibility based on in vitro and in vivo studies. The costs related to the research collaboration will be covered by each company separately. The companies will evaluate results achieved from this research collaboration and then explore the potential for a closer collaboration.

Both companies will retain exclusive ownership rights to existing registered intellectual property. However, any inventions arising from the collaboration will be jointly owned by the companies.

 

About PCI Biotech
PCI Biotech is a cancer focused biopharmaceutical company headquartered in Norway and listed on the Oslo Stock Exchange (Axess). The company is developing therapeutic products based on its proprietary photochemical internalization (PCI) technology. Originating from world leading research at the Norwegian Radium Hospital, the PCI technology works by inducing triggered endosomal release and may be used to unlock the true therapeutic potential of a wide array of modalities, such as small molecules, ADCs and siRNA. Two programs are currently in clinical development in patient populations with a high unmet medical need; recurrent head and neck cancer (phase II) and bile duct cancer (phase I/II).

The company is also developing PCI as a CTL induction technology for therapeutic and prophylactic vaccination. It has been demonstrated both in vivo and ex vivo that PCI significantly increases the number of activated antigen-specific CTLs (Cytotoxic T Lymphocytes) by enhancing the MHC I antigen presentation of antigen presenting cells. When applied more specifically to the emerging field of cancer immunotherapy, PCI can be used to enhance the important cytotoxic effect of therapeutic cancer vaccines. PCI Biotech follows a strategy to create value by improving the effect both of existing cancer drugs and by realizing the large potential in new therapeutics, including therapeutic vaccines.

www.pcibiotech.com

NLSDays 2015 – Early Bird through March 31

Oslo Cancer Cluster is one of the supporting organizations for this years Nordic Life Science Days in Stockholm, as we were last year. This means that members of the cluster benefit from special rates on participation. Through March 31 you may also get early-bird discount.

In collaboration with other healthcare industry actors in Norway, Oslo Cancer Cluster will have a stand at NLSDays to promote Norwegian Healthcare Industry and the cluster members.

Questions regarding this conference may be directed to Jutta Heix, International advisor or Elisabeth Kirkeng Andersen, Head of Communicaton.

Read the latest newsletter from NLSDays 2015 below.

 

Why registering now?
Benefit from our Early Bird rates by registering before March 31st, 2015. Book and secure your company presentation slot when registering.

Benefit from an exclusive discount on all NLSDays’ registration rates. Please contact your organization to get your promotion code.

 

Why attending NLSDays 2015?

NLSDays annually attracts the best from pharma, biotech, medtech and finance the Nordic region has to offer for two days of intense networking. NLSDays’ Super Sessions, topical workshops and vibrant exhibition along with thousands of prescheduled face-to-face meetings make this event the place to be for companies across the Life Science value chain to meet and do business.

Attend NLSDays and take advantage of the opportunity for more partnering meetings in two days than in the rest of the year.

Based on attendance at previous events, NLSDays 2015 will bring together more than 1000 executives from biotechnology, medtech, pharmaceutical and finance companies from the Nordic region and from around the world, who will engage in some 2,000+ face-to-face meetings.

 

Why presenting at NLSDays 2015?

Presenting at NLSDays gives you a chance to increase your visibility and attract more potential partners. Pitch your company’s profile, pipeline and strategy to a selected audience representing over 30 countries. Be visible by business development executives, investors, media, and increase your activity in the partneringONE platform.

NB: Company presenters receive much more requests and schedule more meetings than non-presenting companies! Presenting companies are also spotlighted in NLSDays marketing material leading up to the event, as well as onsite.
Don’t miss the opportunity to book your presentation slot when registering.

Benefit from Early Bird rate on Company Presentation fees through March 31, 2015.

 

Why exhibiting at NLSDays?

The 2015 NLSDays Exhibition reflects our 2015 manifesto: “The Life Science Value Chain”.

Regional and country pavilions, from the Nordic Region and Europe, will showcase and host many companies from their regions or countries. Pharma, biotech, medtech and servives providers will join NLSDays exhibition as well.
About partneringONE™, the leading conference networking solution

partneringONE™ powered by EBD Group increase your ROI at the Nordic Life Science Days conference, reduce your overall business development costs and enhance your partnering effectiveness before, during and after the event. partneringONE allows you to:

• Search companies to source potential collaborations and funding opportunities

• Communicate directly with potential investors and/or partners

• Pre-schedule 30-minute face-to-face meetings to be organized onsite.

 

 

 

NICE, UK recommends photodynamic diagnosis of bladder cancer

Oslo Cancer Cluster member Photocure ASA, is pleased to announce that the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) in the UK has published its first guidelines on bladder cancer, recommending photodynamic diagnosis for improved detection of bladder cancer. NICE makes evidence-based recommendations for healthcare, with the aim of improving treatment and reducing variations in care.

The NICE guidelines recognize cystoscopy as the standard for diagnosis and follow up for patients with bladder cancer, and recommend that people with suspected bladder cancer should be offered surgical removal of the tumor using white-light guided cystoscopy supported by additional techniques to improve tumor detection, such as photodynamic diagnosis.

Kjetil Hestdal, President and CEO of Photocure, said: “We are pleased to have photodynamic diagnosis included in the NICE guideline for diagnosis and management of bladder cancer. This is another important milestone providing further evidence of the value of Hexvix/Cysview in the diagnosis and management of bladder cancer patients. NICE is internationally recognised and well respected for its evidence-based recommendations.”

Photodynamic diagnosis of bladder cancer involves the instillation of a photosensitive compound, such as Hexvix®/Cysview® (hexaminolevulinate), into the bladder. Hexvix/Cysview accumulates in tumor tissue and fluoresces pink under blue light, allowing cancerous areas on the lining of the bladder to be distinguished from healthy tissue.2 Using Hexvix/Cysview as an adjunct to standard white-light cystoscopy (WLC) enables the urologist to better detect and remove lesions compared with white-light cystoscopy alone. After applying stringent cost-effectiveness analyses, NICE concluded “Photodynamic diagnosis appears to be a cost-effective alternative to WLC as an initial diagnostic test.”

Bladder cancer is the fifth most common cancer in Europe, accounting for an estimated 124,000 newly diagnosed cases and more than 40,000 deaths in 2012. Bladder cancer has a high recurrence rate (up to 78% of patients experience recurrence within 5 years of their initial diagnosis), making the lifetime costs of managing bladder cancer one of the highest of all cancers. If bladder cancer is detected at an early stage, the risk of recurrence can be reduced, and management and long-term outcomes for patients improved.

Per-Uno Malmström, Professor of Urology at Uppsala University, Sweden, said: “NICE is a leading authority in healthcare management; this recognition by NICE of the benefits that can be achieved from photodynamic diagnosis will open the door to improved management of bladder cancer for many patients.”

Gregers Hermann, Chief Urologist at Frederiksberg Hospital, Copenhagen University, Denmark, stated: “Patients with bladder cancer deserve the best evidence-based diagnosis and management of their disease. NICE guidelines highlight the proven value of photodynamic diagnosis in terms of achieving cost-effective diagnosis as well as reducing the risk of recurrence for patients with bladder cancer.”

The full NICE bladder cancer guidelines can be found here: http://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng2

 

About Photocure ASA
Photocure ASA, headquartered in Oslo, Norway, is a specialty pharmaceutical company and world leader in photodynamic technology. Based on our unique proprietary Photocure Technology® platform, Photocure develops and commercialises highly selective and effective solutions in disease areas with high unmet medical need, such as bladder cancer, HPV and precancerous cervical lesions, colorectal cancer and skin conditions. Our aim is to provide solutions that can improve health outcomes for patients worldwide. Photocure is listed on the Oslo Stock Exchange (OSE: PHO). Information about Photocure is available at www.photocure.com

About Hexvix®/Cysview®
Hexvix®/Cysview® (hexaminolevulinate hydro-chloride) is an innovative breakthrough technology in the diagnosis and management of non-muscle-invasive bladder cancer. It is designed to selectively target malignant cells in the bladder and induce fluorescence during a cystoscopic procedure using a blue-light enabled cystoscope. Using Hexvix®/Cysview® as an adjunct to standard white-light cystoscopy enables the urologist to better detect and remove lesions, leading to a reduced risk of recurrence. Hexvix®/Cysview® is approved in Europe and the USA.

View videos from Cancer Crosslinks 2015

At this years Cancer Crosslinks we made short video interviews with presenters Professor Paul Baas, Professor Nicholas Navin, Professor Bjørn Tore Gjertsen and Professor Kimmo Porkka on their research and views on cancer treatments in the future. You may watch them below.

We would like to thank the presenters for taking the time to share their knowledge and our sponsors Bristol-Myers Squibb and Roche for making it possible to produce these videos.

Hexvix® can improve the overall survival in bladder cancer patients

In a retrospective study Hexvix fluorescence-guided bladder resection significantly improved overall survival and recurrence free survival compared to resection performed with standard white light.

Photocure ASA  is pleased to note that a study on the impact of Hexvix® on survival in bladder cancer patients has been published in the World Journal of Urology.

The study investigated the impact on survival in bladder cancer patients of photodynamic diagnosis (PDD)-guided bladder tumor resection (TUR-BT), including that guided by Hexvix (hexaminolevulinate (HAL)).

The findings from this retrospective study of 224 patients demonstrate for the first time that Hexvix guided TUR-BT in bladder cancer patients, who later progressed to requiring radical cystectomy (RC), significantly increased the three year overall survival (p=0.037) and the median three year recurrence free survival (p=0.002) compared to patients in the comparator group.

Dr. Georgios Gakis of the Department of Urology, Eberhard-Karls University at Tuebingen, Germany and lead author, stated: “These data indicate for the first time that improved patient management with HAL-guided TUR-BT can make a difference in outcomes even for those bladder cancer patients who later progress to advanced disease and require radical cystectomy.”

Kjetil Hestdal, President and CEO of Photocure, said: “These exciting data add to the growing clinical evidence that Hexvix/Cysview makes a positive impact on the diagnosis and management of bladder cancer in multiple patient types. We believe the continuously increasing adoption of Hexvix/Cysview guided TUR-BT will bring significant clinical and health economic benefit to urologists, patients and payers fighting the disease.”

Bladder cancer, which affects 550,000 people in the U.S. and 500,000 in Europe has a high recurrence rate, up to 61% in one year and 78% over five years, making the lifetime costs of managing bladder cancer one of the highest of all cancers.

 

About Photocure ASA
Photocure ASA, headquartered in Oslo Norway, is a specialty pharmaceutical company and world leader in photodynamic technology. Based on our unique proprietary Photocure Technology® platform, Photocure develops and commercializes highly selective and effective solutions within disease areas with high unmet medical need, such as bladder cancer, HPV and precancerous cervical lesions, colorectal cancer and skin conditions. Our aim is to provide solutions, which can improve health outcomes for patients worldwide. Photocure is listed on the Oslo Stock Exchange (OSE: PHO). Information about Photocure is available at www.photocure.com.

About Hexvix/Cysview
Hexvix/Cysview (hexaminolevulinate hydro-chloride) is an innovative breakthrough technology in the diagnosis and management of non-muscle invasive bladder cancer. It is designed to selectively target malignant cells in the bladder and induce fluorescence during a cystoscopic procedure using a blue light enabled cystoscope. Using Hexvix/Cysview as an adjunct to standard white-light cystoscopy enables the urologist to better detect and remove lesions, leading to a reduced risk of recurrence. Hexvix/Cysview is approved in Europe and US.

 

European Biotechnology Book 2015

HORN International is developing the 2nd edition of ‘European Biotechnology.’  The 2014 edition is available here.

The digital & hardback book will profile several countries, including main bio agencies and organizations, regional structures, IP, pricing & regulatory environments, MAHs, and bio-economy.  Each country will present 20-25 R&D-based companies in editorial format.

The books are given for free to cooperating European and national agencies & organizations, each country’s main bioregions, clusters, academic & research institutes, science parks, and embassies.  The publication will launch in November at BIO-Europe in Munich, as well as BIO-Europe Spring 2016, BIO International, and many others.  Based on demand, first print will increase from 20.000 to 30.000 copies.

Members of the Oslo Cancer Cluster are invited to participate with a discounted offer, and should email Chelsea Ranger, Life Science Project Manager, at chelsea@hornonline.com to reserve space.

 

References:

  • The digital book had over 44.000 viewers from 26 countries within two weeks of launching online, and held 18 of the Top 30 HORN-site trafficked sites in 2014.
  • 1500 books were distributed at the publications launch, BIO-Europe Frankfurt in November 2014
  • “ ‘European Biotechnology, A Medical Focus’ was for the Belgian life sciences community a piece of reference and high standard even before it was published. The collaboration with HORN Publishing was both constructive and inspiring and the response of the life sciences actors in Belgium to the opportunity to feature in this reference work was indeed overwhelming. It demonstrates the motivation of our actors but also the maturity of the Belgian cluster. The fact that we are anxious for the opportunity to be part of the next edition, is likely the best tribute to this wonderful initiative. The main challenge will be to find a picture to represent Belgium next time. But we will handle that with pleasure.”
    Henk Joos, Managing Director, FlandersBio

 

Oslo Cancer Cluster`s start-ups highlighted in investor report

A recent analysis from the audit and advisory company EY is cautiously optimistic on behalf of startup companies in the Nordic Life Science industry – and points to possibilities within Oslo Cancer Cluster.

The analysis, which was commissioned by Norwegian Investinor and Swedish Industrifonden, points to four segments in the Nordic life science market that has the most mature startup companies, and thus are believed to be most attractive for investments: oncology (cancer treatment), inflammation treatment, niche products and imaging. From these segments, several startup companies have already appeared. They have also raised substantial capital.

Some Norwegian examples are Nordic Nanovector, BerGenBio and Targovax, which has raised a total of NOK 485 million in 2014 .These companies are all members of Oslo Cancer Cluster, developing cancer treatments using different technologies.

Excellent quality of research
The strength of the Nordic life science industry is the quality of the research performed, especially in some selected clusters, such as the Oslo Cancer Cluster. Scientific development is a key driver for innovation in the highly regulated pharmaceutical industry.

The biggest concern among life science industry players interviewed in the survey is however, the attention from investors, especially from professional investors with industry insights, which can handle the risks of investing in the earliest stages of company development.

─ The early phase of life science involves great risk, but can also give great returns, so investors should pay close attention to what is now happening in Oslo Cancer Cluster and corresponding clusters, says Ann- Tove Kongsnes, Investment Director of Investinor.

Investinor actively works to attract more foreign investors to Norwegian life science industry, and has also made ​​two investments together with Swedish Industrifonden in Oslo Cancer Cluster members Smartfish and Pharmalink.

 

 

 

 

Nordic Nanovector And Affibody Collaborate On Radio-Immunotherapies Program For Multiple Myeloma

Nordic Nanovector ASA and Affibody AB today announced that the companies have entered into a three-year collaborative research agreement to discover and develop new advanced radio-immunotherapies (RIT) for multiple myeloma.

Backed by a Eurostars grant, the project will combine Affibody’s proprietary platforms with Nordic Nanovector’s radioimmunotherapy technology. The project aims to provide documentation necessary to start GMP manufacturing of the Affibody®-based RIT and subsequently start clinical trials. The companies have also been awarded approximately €1m in total by Vinnova in Sweden and The Norwegian Research Council in Norway.

Upon a successful conclusion of the collaboration Nordic Nanovector will have the opportunity to license the global rights to the Affibody®-based RIT. The development of an Affibody®-based RIT treatment represents a distinct work stream to be carried out in parallel with Nordic Nanvector’s lead product candidate Betalutin™ for non-Hodgkin Lymphoma treatment.

Luigi Costa, Nordic Nanovector CEO commented, “The collaboration with Affibody will allow Nordic Nanovector to expand its product pipeline, while at the same time retaining full focus on the clinical development and commercialization of our lead product candidate, Betalutin™. This collaboration serves as an example of how the company intends to leverage its proprietary targeting technology to treat other hematological cancers in need of novel therapeutic approaches. “

David Bejker, Affibody CEO commented, ”We are delighted to enter into this agreement with Nordic Nanovector and see RIT’s as an area with great potential and a logical continuation of some of our research. The Eurostars platform offers an excellent way for two companies with complementary technologies to collaborate and bring novel therapeutics to market and for Affibody, this comes on top of a year of increased uptake for our platform.”

 

More information:

Affibody
Affibody is a Swedish biotech company focused on developing next generation biopharmaceuticals based on its unique proprietary technology platforms: Affibody® molecules and Albumod™. Affibody is developing a portfolio of innovative drug projects and, in addition, offers the half-life extension technology, Albumod™, for outlicensing.

Affibody has ongoing commercial relationships with several companies including Algeta, Amylin, Sobi, Daiichi-Sankyo, Daewoong, GE, and Thermo Fisher.

Affibody was founded in 1998 by researchers from the Royal Institute of Technology and the Karolinska Institute and is based in Stockholm, Sweden. Major shareholders in the Company include HealthCap and Investor AB. Further information can be found at: www.affibody.com.

 

Nordic Nanovector

Nordic Nanovector ASA is a privately held company established in 2009. The company is developing innovative radioimmunotherapeutics to treat non-Hodgkin Lymphoma (NHL) and other difficult to treat cancers. Nordic Nanovector intends to commercialise its product candidates through strategic alliances and partnerships with experienced oncology businesses and by establishing its own sales and marketing capabilities in selected markets. The company is based and has offices and laboratories in Oslo, Norway.

The company’s lead product candidate, Betalutin™, is a radioimmunotherapeutic that aims to prolong and improve the quality of life of people who suffer from NHL. Further information can be found at: www.nordicnanovector.com.

Oslo Cancer Cluster members will be featured in Nordic Life Science Database

Biotechgate welcomes the three Norwegian partners Innovation Norway, Oslo Cancer Cluster and Nansen Neuroscience Network. This partnership further completes the Nordic Life Sciences Database which allows users to search for companies in the Biotech, Pharma and Medtech area.

More than 170 Norwegian companies can currently be found in the Nordic Life Sciences Database (www.nordic-lifesciences.com). All profiles are updated continuously and the database will be further completed with new profiles over the next months. Due to the partnerships with Innovation Norway, Oslo Cancer Cluster and Nansen Neuroscience Network, the database can be used free of charge. It is also possible for companies to publish their profile at no cost.

Thanks to additional partners from Sweden and Denmark, also Swedish and Danish profiles can be found and viewed for free on the Nordic Life Sciences Database. The portal is part of Biotechgate, a global life science directory which provides information such as product pipelines, management contact details, financing information and much more of more than 30,000 companies in the Biotech, Pharma and Medtech space. Thanks to various search features the information is easily accessible.

“Being the primary government agency for industry development, it is a priority for Innovation Norway to promote our prosperous life science community. Norway has close to 200 companies depending on biotechnology in their daily business and a total of more than 400 companies when looking at life sciences at large. We are very pleased to enter into this collaboration with Biotechgate together with our most prominent biomedical clusters in oncology and neuroscience, respectively.”
Ole Jørgen Marvik, Sector Head, Health and Life Sciences, Innovation Norway

“Oslo Cancer Cluster is very pleased to have teamed up with Venture Valuation to profile our members through Biotechgate. We are reassured that this gives our SME-members a great exposure to the international VC and pharma milieu, which is important in our work to build a Norwegian Healthcare Industry.”
Ketil Widerberg, General Manager, Oslo Cancer Cluster

“Our companies work to address important and complex challenges. Success will require collaborations and partnerships, and we believe that Biotechgate can be a powerful tool to help build those. We look forward to offering this to our members.”
Leif Rune Skymoen, CEO of Nansen Neuroscience Network

“We are more than happy to close this gap in the Nordic Life Science Database. We are sure that having the Norwegian company profiles available on the database, will be a great contribution to all kind of actors active in the life sciences field – inside and outside of Norway and Scandinavia.”
Jost Renggli, COO, Venture Valuation / Biotechgate

 

Gunnar Gårdemyr appointed CEO in Targovax

The board of Targovax is pleased to announce Mr. Gunnar Gårdemyr as the new CEO from January 12th, 2015.

Mr Gårdemyr has more than 30 years of international experience from the pharmaceutical and biotech industry. His experience includes management, business development, mergers & acquisitions, global marketing and commercial strategy. He holds the position as Corporate Advisor for Acino Pharma in Basel, Switzerland today. Prior to this position, he was Senior Vice President, Corporate Development/M&A, Global Business Development, Nycomed and Senior Vice President, Global Marketing, Takeda in Zurich, Switzerland, where he was in charge of the commercial assessment of external business development licensing opportunities.

Mr Gårdemyr started his career in Astra, followed by Ferring, Tigran Technologies and Retinalyze.

He has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and Economics from the University of Lund, Sweden.

Jónas Einarsson, Chairman of Targovax, says, “We are delighted to welcome Gunnar Gårdemyr to Targovax. Our ability to attract an experienced industry executive with Gunnar’s track record and knowledge reflects Targovax` potential. His leadership will accelerate the company’s further development”.

“We are very grateful to Hanne Mette D. Kristensen for her contribution by leading Targovax from establishment to a phase II company”, says Jónas Einarsson.

 

Facts:

Targovax
Targovax was established in October in 2010 to develop immunotherapy in the form of therapeutic cancer vaccines based on pioneering research at the Norwegian Radium Hospital and Norsk Hydro. Mutation of RAS is an early mutation in the transformation of a normal cell into a cancer cell. Lead candidate TG01 educates the body’s immune system to recognize and kill cancer cells with RAS mutations. TG01 has Orphan Drug status for pancreatic cancer in the EU and US and is currently in Phase II trials in operated pancreatic cancer, patients start treatment up to 12 weeks after surgery. The company is located in Lysaker, close to Oslo, Norway.
www.targovax.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New CEO in Nordic Nanovector

The Board of Nordic Nanovector is pleased to announce the appointment of Mr. Luigi Costa as new CEO of the Company.

Mr. Costa has over 20 years of international pharmaceutical and biotech experience. Most recently he held the position of Vice President Europe, Middle East and Africa for Onyx Pharmaceuticals, a global biopharmaceutical company based in South San Francisco, California. He was responsible for the startup of the Company’s international organization and for the pre-launch and launch of its Hematology potential blockbuster Kyprolis outside the US.

Will start 1st September
Prior to joining Onyx Pharmaceuticals, he held several roles of increasing responsibility with Amgen including Head of International Oncology Franchise, General Manager of Italy and Vice President and General Manager of France, the Company’s largest market outside the US. Mr. Costa, is a highly successful senior commercial bio-pharma/’biotech’ leader in Europe.

He has delivered a track record across diverse products and therapeutic areas with experience gained on both sides of the Atlantic. Mr. Luigi Costa will take over as CEO on the 1st September 2014.

Important phase of internationalization
”We are about to enter a new and more international phase in the development of Nordic Nanovector. The Board is therefore pleased that Mr. Luigi Costa has accepted to take over the helm as CEO and take the Company to its new phase,” says Chairman Roy H. Larsen on behalf of the Board. ”We see this as yet another professional acknowledgement of the Company and its product Betalutin’s future potential.”

”We are grateful for Jan A. Alfheim’s personal commitment and contributions as CEO in building up the organization of the Company in the first years of its lifetime” says Roy H. Larsen.

 

FACTS:

About Nordic Nanovector AS
Nordic Nanovector AS is a privately held company established in 2009. The company is based in Norway and has offices and laboratories in Oslo. The company is developing novel innovative anticancer radioimmunotherapeutics to treat non-Hodgkin Lymphoma (NHL) and other hematological malignancies.

About Betalutin
Betalutin™, is a pharmaceutical product candidate consisting of a radionuclide conjugated to a tumor seeking carrier/antibody, which can be used for irradiation of malignant metastasized tumors with minimal damage to nearby healthy normal tissue. This technology aims to prolong and improve the quality of life of people who suffer from non-Hodgkin Lymphoma (NHL).

Ketil Widerberg on Pharma TV

In April 2014, Pharma TV interviewed Ketil Widerberg, General Manager of Oslo Cancer Cluster. Watch the interview and learn more about how Oslo Cancer Cluster works to develop new diagnostics and medication.

Watch the interview here.

In the interview Ketil Widerberg also explains to Fintan Walton from Pharma TV how Oslo Cancer Cluster`s core expertise in the field of Immuno-Oncology makes the cluster well positioned to contribute in this field and how several research projects and ongoing clinical trials will contribute to an exciting pipeline of novel cancer immunotherapies.