Ariana receives EUR 1 million from OSEO for IMAkinib oncology biomarker program

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Oct 12, 2009 dm (0)

Ariana™ Pharma, a provider of decision support tools and services to accelerate drug discovery and development, announces today that the company is to receive EUR 1 million from France’s innovation agency, OSEO, as part of the IMAkinib program. IMAkinib is a collaborative program to develop biomarkers for oncology. By playing a key role in IMAkinib, Ariana™ will be able to further develop its KEM® (Knowledge Extraction Management) technology and enter a new field, imaging biomarkers.

Cancer is still growing fast in terms of incidence, mortality rates and associated costs. WHO estimates that cancer-related deaths will climb 51 percent between 2002 and 2030 with approximately 11.5 million deaths linked to this pathology in 2030 worldwide. IMAkinib aims to improve oncology treatments by developing a new generation of specific biomarkers for diagnostics and targeted therapies. The project leader is oncology specialist Oncodesign, and the other team member is Guerbet, responsible for radiotracers and clinical trials. The total cost of the program is estimated at EUR 24.7 million over eight years. OSEO will contribute EUR 10.3 million.

The exhaustive analysis of data allowing the selection and optimization of sensitive and specific biomarkers remains a major limiting factor on progress of current work in the field of biomarkers. The systematic analysis technology in KEM®, developed by Ariana™, could have a significant impact by overcoming the restrictions inherent in classic statistical analyses. Apart from the IMAkinib program itself, this project will allow Ariana™ to develop its expertise by extending the application of its KEM® technology to the field of biomarkers.

In the IMAkinib project, Ariana™ will contribute towards the multi-objective optimization of radiotracers and the selection of best candidates. Thanks to its proprietary tool, KEM®, Ariana™ can shorten the time needed to develop biomarkers and thereby reduce costs. The automatic exhaustive detection of possible biomarkers enables a better selection and a lessening of the risks linked to the choice of tracers.

“Ariana™’s inclusion in this program is important as it will build even more power and reliability into our decision support technology KEM® developed over the last several years,” said Mohammad Afshar, CEO of Ariana™ Pharma. “The results of the IMAkinib program will allow Ariana™ to rapidly establish itself as a leading player in the market for biomarker development tools.” The collaboration will enable Ariana™ to offer its customers KEM® Biomarkers to accelerate their development. In addition, the automation and exhaustivity of the data analysis possible though KEM® will lead to an optimal selection of in vivo, added Afshar. “We are delighted to be working alongside Guerbet and Oncodesign and to bring to the consortium our cutting edge technologies in data analysis and drug development.”