Presage Biosciences Awarded Debut Grant From The Mark Foundation For Cancer Research To Support Immuno-Oncology Applications Of CIVO, An Intratumoral Microdosing Platform

Published: Sep 25, 2017

SEATTLE--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Presage Biosciences, an oncology company commercializing CIVO™, a novel drug development platform to assess drugs and combinations directly in-patient tumors, and The Mark Foundation for Cancer Research, an emerging cancer philanthropy, today announced the Foundation’s first-ever award. The grant is aimed at advancing Presage’s next generation of intratumoral microdosing platform to assess immuno-oncology drug combinations.

“We are deeply honored to be the inaugural grant award for The Mark Foundation,” said Dr. Richard Klinghoffer, Chief Scientific Officer of Presage. “Discovery of effective combinations of immune oncology agents is recognized as key to improving patient outcomes. This project aims to provide a technology to test dozens of potential combinations per patient, with the intent to dramatically accelerate advancement of life saving treatments into the cancer clinic.”

Resistance to immune checkpoint inhibition by a majority of patients has led oncology researchers to emphasize drug combinations as a means of combatting this drug resistance. Traditional means of precision medicine have so far failed to accurately and robustly identify responder patient populations to improve clinical trial outcomes. Unlike static assays such as PD-L1 expression measurement that measure only a patient’s baseline expression of tumor antigens, Presage’s CIVO™ platform can assess the biology of tumor responses to perturbation by microdoses of multiple different drugs and drug combinations. Importantly, microdoses are administered to the patient’s tumor while the tumor is still in the patient’s body, thus capturing the critical immune microenvironment. This “functional precision oncology” approach may be an important complement to existing efforts to understand the differences in patient responses to cancer treatments.

"The development of Presage’s intratumoral microdosing platform is well aligned with The Mark Foundation’s mission of funding groundbreaking cancer research that integrates the discovery of new knowledge in biology with innovative technology solutions," said Dr. Michele Cleary, CEO of The Mark Foundation. "The proven track record of the Presage scientific team in combining a deep understanding of tumor biology with cutting-edge approaches provides us with great confidence that our support of this endeavor will ultimately result in better options for patients with cancer.”

About Presage Biosciences

Presage Biosciences is an oncology company pioneering a new drug development approach to assess novel drugs and drug combinations directly in patient tumors with its patented CIVO™ intratumoral microdosing platform. The CIVO platform is a drug development tool intended to simultaneously assess responses to multiple drugs or drug combinations directly in a single solid tumor while still in a patient’s body. Presage also partners with oncology-focused pharmaceutical companies through strategic alliances to provide data to discover effective drug combinations. Presage is privately held and based in Seattle. For more information, visit

About The Mark Foundation for Cancer Research

The Mark Foundation for Cancer Research is a newly-formed 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to funding groundbreaking cancer research that integrates the discovery of new knowledge in biology with innovative technology solutions to deliver breakthroughs to patients. Based in New York City, The Mark Foundation aims to be a premier partner to cancer researchers with an exemplary non-profit business model that combines the funding of selective high-impact, transformative basic and translational cancer research with venture philanthropy.

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