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NCC transfers checkpoint inhibitor diagnosis method to startup
  • By Shim Hyun-tai
  • Published 2020.04.23 17:54
  • Updated 2020.04.23 17:54
  • comments 0

The National Cancer Center (NCC) said Thursday that it has recently signed a technology transfer agreement to Innovation for the companion diagnosis technology of blood-based immune checkpoint inhibitors.

The NCC said it would hand over the technology, which predicts the anticancer response of the immune checkpoint inhibitor through testing specific proteins in the blood, to the startup firm. The inhibitors are the third-generation anticancer medications that are recently used but are very expensive.

Although the patients have to shoulder the high cost of the anticancer medicines, there are no companion diagnoses that precisely tell the effectiveness of the treatment for each patient. The current companion diagnosis predicts the anticancer responsiveness of an immune checkpoint inhibitor by immunostaining a protein, programmed death-ligand 1, in cancer tissue, but the prediction is not reliable.

NCC’s new diagnostic method uses specific protein in the blood to tell the anticancer response and has a different feature that checks immune checkpoints, it said.

Using this diagnostic method, physicians can predict customized responses to determine whether immune checkpoint inhibitors work effectively on patients.

“Our technology uses blood and allows customized therapy for the patients, and I believe it to be a good example of commercializing competitive research technology,” NCC Director Lee Eun-sook said.

Innovation CEO Kim Seung-gu said, “Our company will produce a companion diagnostic kit after clinical verification and commercialize it through tying up with global companies.”


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