COURTAGEN TO PARTNER WITH AVAXIA BIOLOGICS IN GI ACUTE RADIATION SYNDROME INITIATIVE
Partners to Develop Quantitative Screening Assay for Program to Develop Drugs to Treat Acute Radiation Damage to the GI Tract
WOBURN, Mass., February 29, 2012 -- Courtagen Life Sciences, Inc. (“Courtagen”), a privately held life sciences company that provides innovative proteomic and genomic products and services to the life sciences industry, today announced that it has entered into a strategic collaboration with Avaxia Biologics, Inc. (“Avaxia”) to develop an assay that will streamline the development of an oral antibody therapy to mitigate the gastrointestinal damage that follows radiation exposure that might occur after a nuclear incident. The combined effort will focus on addressing the critical need to quickly and accurately identify the impact of Avaxia’s oral antibody therapy in animal models and, ultimately, in patients.
The collaboration provides validation of the Courtagen protein diagnostic technology by a recognized leader in oral antibody therapeutics. Together the two companies will pursue a first in class solution that could enable the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) and other Federal biodefense programs to achieve their goal of developing therapeutics to mitigate the damage to the gastrointestinal tract that follows severe whole body exposure to ionizing radiation.
"The unmatched sensitivity, accuracy and ease of use of Courtagen’s Avantra® Q400 Protein Biomarker Technology combined with Avaxia’s novel oral anti-TNF therapy will enable Avaxia to quickly stratify and monitor various therapeutic interventions that will eventually lead to the creation of a treatment for gastrointestinal damage,” said Brendan McKernan, President of Courtagen Life Sciences. “The outcomes of this partnership have the potential to make a significant impact on biodefense, public health and drug development initiatives.”
“We are pleased to be working with Courtagen to develop novel assays to be used in our gastrointestinal acute radiation program,” said Dr. Barbara Fox, CEO of Avaxia. “The goal of this collaboration will be to accelerate the progress of our oral antibody product through the key efficacy studies needed to support the product's use as a nuclear threat countermeasure.“
Courtagen has developed a next-generation, POC protein biomarker technology, called the Avantra® Q400 Biomarker Workstation and QPDx® BioChip. This technology is ideal for users who operate in a decentralized environment and require on-demand testing of biomarkers. The protein diagnostics technology provides users with an integrated system that automates sample processing, reagent handling, biomarker detection and analysis. This unmatched simplicity minimizes user error and affords precision with limited operator training.
ABOUT AVAXIA BIOLOGICS, INC.
Avaxia Biologics is a development-stage company developing oral antibody therapeutics that act locally within the gastrointestinal tract. The antibodies are designed to treat both diseases of the GI tract and metabolic diseases. Using its proprietary antibody platform, Avaxia is developing products for inflammatory bowel disease, GI acute radiation syndrome, celiac disease, oral mucositis, diabetes and obesity. Avaxia’s program to develop a treatment agent for GI acute radiation syndrome is supported by a contract from the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA).
About Courtagen Life Sciences, Inc.
Courtagen Life Sciences is a privately held life science company that provides innovative proteomic and genomic products and services to the Life Sciences industry. Founded by innovators in next-generation sequencing (NGS), genetics, molecular biology, and information science, our company delivers tools that enable researchers and clinicians to make better decisions regarding drug development and patient care. Courtagen provides proteomic and genomic solutions through its various operating divisions. More information can be found at www.courtagen.com.
MassBio Membership gives you:
Purchasing power-MassBio negotiates a broad-based collection of services on behalf of member companies and passes the savings on to its members.
Networking and professional development-MassBio organizes and executes numerous conferences, committee meetings, and networking events throughout the year.
MassBio Signature Events-Attend our Investors Forum, Innovator Roundtables, Pharma Days, our Golf Classic Fundraiser, Policy Leadership Breakfast, and many others.
Public policy & Advocacy-As the state's leading advocate for our life science super cluster, we fight for public policy initiatives and tax incentives in Massachusetts and Washington, D.C., that will enable biotechnology companies to do their best work.
Economic development-MassBio provides expert advice and guidance to help companies find suitable locations and resources as they move to and grow in the Bay State. We make Massachusetts a better place for your business.
Visibility/Resources-Members are listed on a searchable directory that includes a profile and link to the company's website. We highlight your company's latest news by posting to our MassBio member news page. In addition, members can post job openings on our website free!
Educational incentives-We promote education, workforce development and lifelong learning through the MassBioEd Foundation. The foundation customizes training programs for companies and educational institutions and promotes science in the classroom through BioTeach. MassBio members receive a discount on courses offered by the foundation.