SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., and SINGAPORE, April 4, 2008 /PRNewswire/ -- Raven biotechnologies, inc., a privately held company focused on the discovery and development of monoclonal antibody therapeutics (MAbs) for cancer, and the Bioprocessing Technology Institute (BTI), today announced a collaboration to advance the discovery of novel cancer stem cell antibodies.
Under the terms of the agreement, Raven will license its proprietary whole cell immunization technology for use with BTI's stem cells. Raven will screen the resulting antibodies against its collection of cancer lines, including its cancer stem cell lines. Raven will have the rights to the antibodies BTI generates using Raven's immunization technology for use in cancer therapeutics and diagnostics and BTI will retain the rights to the antibodies it raises for all other stem cell therapeutic areas.
"Cancer stem cells represent a promising new source of oncology drug targets," stated George Schreiner, M.D., Ph.D., chief executive officer of Raven biotechnologies. "Our collaboration with the Bioprocessing Technology Institute's stem cell research team allows Raven to leverage its novel technology for developing monoclonal antibodies through immunization with stem cells. BTI is a world-class research institute. We anticipate that this collaboration should yield a substantial number of novel monoclonal antibodies targeting cancer stem cells suitable for development by Raven biotechnologies and its partners."
Miranda Yap, Ph.D., Executive Director of Bioprocessing Technology Institute added, "Both BTI and Raven have much to gain from this strategic alliance. It will help strengthen our respective fields of research and advance science to better human healthcare. Generation of these novel antibodies to stem cells with Raven's proprietary technology will enable the development of tools for the characterization of stem cells and importantly, these antibodies will also be valuable for the separation of stem cell populations for BTI's cell therapy work."
About Bioprocessing Technology Institute (BTI)
Bioprocessing Technology Institute (BTI) is a member of the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR). Established in 1990 as the Bioprocessing Technology Unit, it was renamed the Bioprocessing Technology Institute (BTI) in 2003. The research institute's mission is to develop manpower capabilities and establish cutting-edge technologies relevant to the bioprocessing community. Some of the key research areas include expression engineering, animal cell technology, stem cell research, microbial fermentation, downstream purification and analytics. More information on BTI can be found at http://www.bti.a-star.edu.sg.
About Raven biotechnologies
Raven biotechnologies, inc. (http://www.ravenbio.com) is a privately held biotechnology company focused on the development of monoclonal antibody therapeutics for treating cancer. Raven's lead product candidate, RAV12, targets adenocarcinomas and is in clinical development for the treatment of gastrointestinal and other cancers. Raven's discovery process simultaneously identifies cell-surface drug targets and the antibody therapeutics to regulate them. Our focus on biological function allows us to rapidly identify novel target antigens and therapeutic candidates in their native configuration in the intact cell membrane. Our integrated approach is based on proprietary methods for optimizing the production of MAbs targeting cell-surface proteins, including the use of human tissue-specific progenitor and tumor stem cell lines developed at Raven.
To date Raven has identified multiple candidate therapeutic MAbs for many cancer indications including lung, colon, pancreatic, prostate, breast and ovarian cancer.
Source: Raven biotechnologies, inc.; Bioprocessing Technology Institute