ITUS Corporation Licenses CAR-T Technology from The Wistar Institute
SAN JOSE, CA – November 14, 2017: ITUS Corporation (NASDAQ: ITUS) today announced that it has executed an exclusive worldwide license agreement with The Wistar Institute for a Chimeric Antigen Receptor T-Cell (CAR-T) technology aimed initially at treating ovarian cancer, and eventually additional solid tumors.
ITUS has formed a subsidiary, Certainty Therapeutics, Inc., to develop and commercialize the innovative CAR-T technology. The Wistar Institute is a founding member of Certainty Therapeutics along with majority owner ITUS. Dr. Amit Kumar, President and CEO of ITUS stated, “We are very pleased to have entered into this new relationship with The Wistar Institute, and we are excited to grow our business into the CAR-T therapeutics space. This license is a transformative event for an emerging company like ITUS, enabling us to work in a space that is the focus of tremendous scientific and investor interest. With our knowledge and expertise of immune system function, an expansion into immuno-therapy is a very natural progression for the company, and we believe one that is highly complementary with our Cchek™ cancer detection platform.”
The CAR-T technology, exclusively licensed to Certainty, is initially focused on ovarian cancer, with potential future applications in Prostate, Pancreatic and other cancers as well. The engineered T-cells will use the Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH) to target ovarian cells that express the FSH-Receptor.
“While CAR-T technology has demonstrated exciting results in B-cell cancers, very little progress on solid tumors has been made. However, this technology approach utilizes CAR-T technology in an innovative way which shows promise for ovarian cancer and other solid tumors, and we are very excited to be at the forefront of using CAR-T technology against solid tumors,” added Dr. Kumar.
Dr. Kumar further stated, “We are currently negotiating with one of the country's top cancer centers to further develop the technology, aiming to complete the studies necessary to submit an Investigational New Drug application to the US FDA, enabling human testing on ovarian cancer patients.”
Dr. Kumar concluded, “Our business strategy encompasses working with prestigious biomedical research institutes and academic medical centers to develop our technologies and products to a stage where they can be partnered with corporate allies. Such a strategy enables us, to focus on the early innovation and IP, to leverage the investment and infrastructure of our academic partners, and eventually leverage the infrastructure and commercialization capabilities of our corporate ally. The development of both of our programs, the Cchek™ early cancer detection platform and our new CAR-T initiative fit our strategy.”
Pre-clinical data describing the licensed technology, both in-vitro and in-vivo, was published earlier this year: Clinical Cancer Research, 23(2) January 15, 2017, 441-453.
ITUS, a cancer-focused biotechnology company, is harnessing the body’s immune system in the fight against cancer. Its wholly owned subsidiary, Anixa Diagnostics Corporation, is developing the CchekTM platform, a series of non-invasive blood tests for the early detection of solid tumor based cancers, which is based on the body’s immunological response to the presence of a malignancy. Its majority owned subsidiary, Certainty Therapeutics, Inc., is developing CAR-T based immuno-therapy drugs which genetically engineer a patient’s own immune cells to fight cancer. ITUS also continually examines emerging technologies in complementary or related fields for further development and commercialization. Additional information is available at www.ITUScorp.com.
The Wistar Institute
The Wistar Institute is an international leader in biomedical research with special expertise in cancer research and vaccine development. Founded in 1892 as the first independent nonprofit biomedical research institute in the United States, Wistar has held the prestigious Cancer Center designation from the National Cancer Institute since 1972. Wistar’s business development team is advancing Wistar science and technology development through creative partnerships. The Institute works actively to ensure that research advances move from the laboratory to the clinic as quickly as possible. wistar.org.
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