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Aterovax and Biomnis Join to Offer sPLA2 Biomarker to Trial Sector

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Aterovax has teamed up with Biomnis to target the clinical trial industry with a new atherosclerosis biomarker, sPLA2, designed to give researchers better insight into a candidate heart drug’s therapeutic potential.

Unlike related biomarkers markers, which generally measure only one isoform of the human secreted phospholipases A2 (sPLA2) enzyme, Aterovax claim their new activity test is capable of measuring the “full family”.

“The partnership with Biomnis provides access for Aterovax to the pharmaceutical clinical testing market,” Dominique Surun, CEO of Aterovax, told Outsourcing-Pharma, adding: “The research market is an important sector for Aterovax to leverage the first applications of its sPLA2 activity test.

“Clinical studies have shown that the higher the sPLA2 activity, the greater the risk of cardiovascular event in patients already suffering from cardiovascular disease, and in people who have yet to show symptoms,” said Dr Surun.

According to him, this is because sPLA2 belongs to a family of enzymes that generate fatty acids and lysophospholipids. These in turn trigger a variety of proinflammatory actions, leading to atherosclerotic plaque development and subsequent rupture.

Clinical trial applications

“sPLA2 plays a causal and central role in atherosclerosis,” Surun said. As a result of this, Aterovax believes that sPLA2 activity is highly accurate in determining risk of the disease, helping provide researchers with information for future disease management.

Surun suggested that testing for sPLA2 activity could be used in patient stratification in clinical trials. “This means that enrolment can be completed easier and quicker, enabling the clinical trial to be done more effectively,” he said.

The company also said that sPLA2 testing can determine if a patient is at risk from potential cardiovascular events, or where existing patients are concerned, if a second event is likely and suggested that assessment of these risk factors will enable physicians and treat any problems accordingly.

The cardiovascular biomarker market is expected to increase from $1.3bn in 2007 to almost $6.6bn in 2015, suggesting “an increase in clinical biomarkers, targeted therapies with associated diagnostics, genetic markers of cardiovascular risk and pharmacogenomic and prognostic tests,” said Surun.

Source: Outsourceing-Pharma