Nantes, France, July 7, 2010 – TcLand Expression SA, a global leader in the field of gene expression biomarkers in allo- and auto-immunity, today announced the signature of a licensing agreement with Inserm Transfert, a private-sector technology transfer subsidiary of the French National Institute for Health and Medical Research (Inserm). The terms of the agreement include the grant of worldwide, exclusive licenses to TcLand Expression for two different patents1 covering gene expression signatures which can predict responsiveness to rheumatoid arthritis (RA) therapies.
TcLand Expression is developing and clinically validating gene-expression-based biomarkers in the
field of transplantation and companion diagnostic tests for use with auto-immune disease therapies.
Based on the methods protected by the two Inserm patents, TcLand Expression intends to develop
companion diagnostic tests for RA therapies. The signature of this agreement marks the start of close
collaboration between the two organizations because TcLand Expression's researchers will cooperate
with the joint Inserm/University of Rouen U905 "Physiopathology and Biotherapy of Inflammatory
and Autoimmune Disease" research unit (headed by Professor Olivier Boyer).
"This agreement is much more than a simple licensing deal because it means that our R&D division
will collaborate closely with Inserm researchers on the design of companion diagnostics for treatment
of RA - a severe, disabling disease which affects some 70 million people worldwide!", commented
TcLand Expression CEO Alain Huriez. "Our company has forged a number of strategic
collaborations for the development of new biomarkers in this disease area - not only with the Inserm
but also with the Vall d'Hebron University Hospital Research Institute in Spain and the Lyons Public
Hospitals Group in France", he concluded.
"TcLand Expression is an Inserm spin-out and so we are particularly delighted to help consolidate its
business activity - as we have done in the past and will no doubt continue to do in the future. The
company is very well positioned in the field of biomarkers and personalized medicine - the strategic
themes in this collaborative exploitation of the Inserm's research work", commented Cécile Tharaud,
Inserm Transfert CEO.
"Our combined skills will enable us to design a test which should deliver significant progress in the
treatment of rheumatoid arthritis and the development of companion diagnostic products", concluded
Professor Olivier Boyer.
TcLand Expression and its partners (Professor Pierre Miossec at Edouard Herriot Hospital in Lyons
and Professor Olivier Vittecoq and Dr Thierry Lequerré at Inserm U905) have received €450,000 in
funding from the French National Research Agency (Agence Nationale de la Recherche, ANR) for
About rheumatoid arthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is the most common severe type of inflammatory arthritis. It affects young
individuals, with a greater prevalence in women. Given that the chronic inflammation in RA leads to joint
destruction and cardiovascular damage, this disease constitutes a major public health concern. Despite significant
progress in the treatment of RA over the last 10 years, many patients only respond partially and true remission is
only achieved in a small proportion of cases. Joint destruction cannot be halted in all patients and the repair of
existing damage (let alone a cure) is still an unattainable goal. Furthermore, some patients have to stop treatment
because of toxicity and adverse events. The ability to predict the response to a treatment prior to its initiation
would constitute a major step forward and would optimize patient care, reduce the risk of adverse events and
substantially reduce healthcare costs.
About TcLand Expression
TcLand Expression is an acknowledged pioneer in the discovery, the development and the validation of gene
expression biomarkers for unmet medical needs in transplantation and auto-immune disease. The company
benefits from an exceptional scientific and clinical environment.
For more information, please visit our website: www.tcland-expression.com
About Inserm Transfert
Founded in 2000, Inserm Transfert SA is the private subsidiary of the French National Institute for Health and
Medical Research (Inserm), dedicated to technology transfer (from invention disclosure to industrial
partnership). Inserm Transfert manages European and International research projects, supports preclinical,
clinical and post-marketing studies. Since 2009, Inserm Transfert has run a proof-of-concept fund. The company
is also committed to seed financing in the biotech sector, through its dedicated fund Inserm Transfert Initiative.
For more information, please visit our website: www.inserm-transfert.fr
Alain Huriez, CEO
Tel.: +33 2 40 35 89 99
Tel.: + 33 6 64 18 99 59
Tel. : + 33 1 55 03 01 68