Successful Nordic Life Science Days 2016

The Nordic Life Science Days 2016 was a great success at many levels. For the first time the Norwegian life science actors invited to a joint meeting to promote a closer collaboration with the Swedish life science milieu at an even t at the Norwegian Embassy in Stockholm. Oslo Cancer Cluster was co-hosting the Nordic Life Science conference this year, and we hosted three super-sessions on oncology which set the scene for the future of oncology treatment.

 

Below you may find a summary of the coverage of our joint activities with UIO:Life Science and LMI at the Nordic Life Science Days, only in Norwegian. We will also like to stress our gratitude towards both Ambassador Kai Eide and his staff at the Noorwegian Embassy in Stockholm and Director for Innovation Anne Kjertsi Fahlvik at the Norwegian Research Council for sponsoring and great collaboration.

 

Kronikk i Dagens medisin 13. september: Livsvitenskap stort potensial for verdiskaping

Med et nordisk samarbeid for klinisk utprøving kan vi stå sterkere i konkurransen om å tiltrekke oss aktører som vil gjennomføre kliniske studier. Dette kan gi nordiske pasienter tilgang til innovativ behandling.

#noswelife

Aktivitet på Twitter fra nettverkskvelden kan på ses på hashtagen #noswelife

https://twitter.com/search?q=%23noswelife&src=typd

Standbesøk

Fra ambassadørens besøk på standen sammen med medsponsor Forskningsrådet
https://twitter.com/forskningsradet/status/776023988204101633

Omtaler på lmi.no

Nordic Life Science Days er i gang i Stockholm

LMI står på stand med flere andre aktører for å promotere Norge og norsk livsvitenskap.
http://www.lmi.no/aktuelt-fra-lmi/2016/09/nordic-life-science-days-er-i-gang-i-stockholm

Trenger Norge en egen koordinator for livsvitenskap?

Det var et av temaene da ambassaden inviterte til nettverkskveld i går.

http://www.lmi.no/aktuelt-fra-lmi/2016/09/trenger-norge-en-egen-koordinator-for-livsvitenskap

Omtaler på uio.no/livsvitenskap

Norsk-svensk nettverkskveld og Nordic Life Science Days

http://www.uio.no/forskning/satsinger/livsvitenskap/aktuelt/aktuelle-saker/2016/norsk-svensk-nettverkskveld-og-nordic-life-science.html

Også sendt med nyhetsbrev til over 1000 abonnenter

http://www.uio.no/forskning/satsinger/livsvitenskap/aktuelt/nyhetsbrev/2016/september.html

Omtaler på norge.se

Vellykket norsk-svensk dialog-kveld om Life Science samarbeid. Norsk-svensk «Helseinnovatørskole» lansert. http://www.norge.se/News_and_events/Nyheter-om-politikk-og-okonomi/Vellykket-norsk-svensk-dialog-kveld-om-Life-Science-samarbeid-Norsk-svensk-Helseinnovatorskole-lansert-/#.V-kZnfmLRaQ

Nordic Life Science Days og norsk-svensk nettverkskveld

  1. og 15. september arrangeres Nordic Life Science Days i Stockholm, Nordens største konferanse for den globale livsvitenskapsindustrien. I tilknytning til konferansen arrangerer Norges ambassade en svensk-norsk dialog og nettverkskveld.

http://www.uio.no/forskning/satsinger/livsvitenskap/aktuelt/nyhetsbrev/2016/september.html

 

Joe Biden is looking to Norway

Vicepresident Joe Biden used Norway as an example when he spoke at the Social Good Summit this week. Biden was appointed by Barack Obama to lead the “Cancer Moonshot” project. The project aims to make a decade’s worth of advances in cancer prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and care in just 5 years.  

 

The collaboration between Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and Norwegian Cancer Registry is a central part of this strategy. The collaboration, facilitated by Oslo Cancer Cluster, is aiming to optimalize cervical cancer screening by using machine learning and neural networks to look at historical data.

You can find the speech here: https://livestream.com/accounts/1467982/events/6346857/videos/136285154/player?width=640&height=360&autoPlay=false&mute=false

 

More information about the “Cancer Moonshot” initiative here:

More about the collaboration between Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and Norwegian Cancer Registry (in Norwegian):

 

 

 

Eurostars Event – 12th October 2016

Amsterdam, the Netherlands

Interested in setting up an R&D project with international partners? On Wednesday 12th October 2016, the Netherlands Enterprise Agency, together with the EUREKA Secretariat and Enterprise Europe Network are organising an international  event dedicated to the Eurostars programme (www.eurostars-eureka.eu) at the Amsterdam Arena in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. The Programme will start at 9.00 and finish at 18.30.

 

This year’s event will be two-fold:

1) Project Building

An important part of the Eurostars Autumn event is reserved for the Matchmaking of companies and research organisations from the Netherlands and 35 other Eurostars countries. The Matchmaking will be organised by Enterprise Europe Network. During the event companies are also invited to pitch their ideas to a group of peers. Eurostars works on a bottom-up basis, meaning that representatives from all technology fields are welcome to participate in the Programme. The event will focus in particular on:

Life Sciences and Health
ICT and Electronics
Industrial Manufacturing, Materials and Transport
Energy Technologies
Food Technologies
2) Providing Information

There will be opportunities to learn more about the Eurostars Programme (application process, eligibility rules, tips and tricks for writing successful applications) and the national funding rules of your potential project partners. Representatives from the Eurostars Secretariat in Brussels and national Eurostars offices will be present at the event so you can discuss your ideas with them.

 

Registration

Registration for this event is free of charge and is open from 15th July to 7th October 2016. In order to register you must use the online registration form via this site. You can indicate beforehand in which breakout session(s) you would like to take part. The session “Explaining Eurostars” will be given twice. For the Matchmaking you will be required to upload your company profile to the site. Please note that you will need to take care of your own travel and accommodation arrangements.

 

Excursions on 13th October

Some excursions will be organised for participants of this Eurostars event on 13th October. Please check the site regularly for updates about these excursions.

 

More information about Eurostars

If you are interested in taking part in Eurostars or have any questions about the programme, please contact your national Eurostars office (https://www.eurostars-eureke.eu/eurostars-countries/europe). For more information about the Eurostars event in Amsterdam, please contact Arnold Meijer: arnold.meijer@rvo.nl.

More information about Enterprise Europe Network

Enterprise Europe Network helps small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) make the most of business opportunities in the EU and beyond. Connecting SME’s, knowledge institutes and research organisations takes place by organising bilateral meetings at events, international fairs or trade missions. The Network also has an extensive databank of companies and research institutes looking for international partners, which you can also search in this for a partner yourself http://een.ec.europa.eu/.

If you are interested in finding an international business partner or have any questions about the Network, please contact  Rebecca van Leeuwen Rebecca.vanleeuwen@rvo.nl or Michelle Lemmers Michelle.lemmers@rvo.nl

 

For more information see here.

PERMIDES project going forward with project manager hired

PERMIDES_Gupta_web

Oslo Cancer Cluster and NCE Smart Energy Markets together with four European clusters in medicine and IT managed to land a prestigious Horizon 2020 EU project this spring. The official kick-off for the project is September 7th to 8th in Karlsrue and project manager Gupta Udatha is hired to work in both Oslo and Halden to implement the project from Norwegian side.

 

Project manager Gupta Udatha He works at both the Norwegian Centres of Expertise located in Eastern Norway, i.e. Oslo Cancer Cluster and Smart Innovation Østfold. The PERMIDES project aims at establishing fruitful collaborations between the bio-pharmaceutical and IT sectors in the European region to advance the field of personalised medicine through the development of novel digital solutions with cancer as the model disease.

– Gupta has an amazing background from bioinformatics and big data analytics of biopharmaceutical data. We are confident he is going to drive this project forward in a satisfactory way, says Ketil Widerberg, CEO Oslo Cancer Cluster and Dieter Hirdes, F & I Coordinator Smart Innovation Østfold company as a leader NCE Smart Cluster in a joint comment.

The PERMIDES project will start 1 September and with a kick-off meeting in Karlsruhe 7th to 8th September.

 

 

Photocure hosts bladder cancer key opinion leader breakfast in New York City

Oslo, Norway, August 29, 2016, Photocure ASA hosted on August 25 an educational event in New York aimed at institutional investors and analysts, which focused on the treatment of bladder cancer.
At the event, key opinion leaders (KOLs) from the New York Presbyterian / Columbia Hospital, University of Chicago, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center presented details on the diagnosis, treatment and management of bladder cancer; gave an update on the new American Urological Association / Society of Urologic Oncology guidelines, and addressed progress being made in the evolving field of genomics in guiding treatment and the future direction of bladder cancer management. During the event, physicians also highlighted the role of Photocure’s Blue Light Cystoscopy with Cysview®, in the detection and management of bladder cancer.

Kjetil Hestdal, President and CEO of Photocure commented, -We would like to thank participants for joining us at this informative event. We are encouraged by the progress we are seeing with Blue Light Cystoscopy with Cysview in the US marketplace and are committed to making this important product accessible to patients and physicians in this market.

The event was recorded and presentations can be found at:

Find the video here

Find the presentation slides here

Cancer of the Urinary Bladder
Dr. Gary Steinberg; Bruce & Beth White Family Professor of Surgery & Vice Chairman of Urology & Director Urologic Oncology, University of Chicago

Genomic Landscape of Bladder Cancer
Dr. Yair Lotan; Professor, Chief Urologic Oncology, Holder of the Helen J. & Robert Strauss Professorship, Univ. of Texas Southwestern Medical Center

Risk Stratification and Guidelines for Management of NMIBC
Dr. James McKiernan; John K. Lattimer Professor & Chairman Dept. of Urology, College of Surgeons & Urologist-in-Chief at NY Presbyterian Columbia Hospital & Vice Chair, AUA Guidelines Committee

About Bladder Cancer
Bladder cancer is the fifth most common cancer in men with more than 330,000 new cases annually and more than 130,000 die of the disease1. It has a high recurrence rate with an average of 61% in one year and 78% over five years, making the lifetime costs of managing bladder cancer one of the highest amongst all cancers. It is a costly, potentially progressive disease for which patients have to undergo multiple cystoscopies because of the high risk of recurrence. A recent paper on the economic burden of bladder cancer across the European Union estimates that bladder cancer cost the EU 4.9 billion Euro in 20122. There is an urgent need to improve both the diagnosis and the management of bladder cancer for the benefit of patients and healthcare systems alike.

Bladder cancer is classified into two types, non-muscle invasive bladder cancer (NMIBC) and muscle-invasive bladder cancer (MIBC), depending on the depth of invasion in the bladder wall. NMIBC is still in the inner layer of cells. These cancers are the most common (75%) of all bladder cancer cases and include the subtypes Ta, carcinoma in situ (CIS) and T1 lesions. MIBC is when the cancer has grown into deeper layers of the bladder wall. These cancers, including subtypes T2, T3 and T4, are more likely to spread and are harder to treat.

About Hexvix®/Cysview®
Hexvix®/Cysview® (hexaminolevulinate hydro-chloride) is an innovative breakthrough technology in the diagnosis and management of non-muscle-invasive bladder cancer. It is designed to selectively target malignant cells in the bladder and induce fluorescence during a cystoscopic procedure using a blue light enabled cystoscope. Using Hexvix®/Cysview® as an adjunct to standard white light cystoscopy enables the urologist to better detect and remove lesions, leading to a reduced risk of recurrence.

Hexvix® is the tradename in Europe, Cysview® in U.S. and Canada. Hexvix® is marketed and sold by Photocure in the Nordic countries and in the US with the trade name Cysview®. Photocure has a strategic partnership with Ipsen for the commercialization of Hexvix in Europe, excluding the Nordic region.  Please refer to https://www.photocure.com/Partnering-with-Photocure/Our-partners for further information on our commercial partners.

Ultimovacs satser sterkt på videre utprøving av lovende kreftvaksine

Kreftvaksineselskapet Ultimovacs AS henter NOK 75 millioner til finansiering av videre kliniske studier. Selskapet har gjennomført tre vellykkede fase I-studier for sin terapeutiske vaksine mot kreft. Over 50 kreftpasienter har deltatt i studiene. Studiene viser at mer enn 80% av pasientene får aktivert sitt immunsystem som følge av denne behandlingen.

Bilde: Administrerende direktør Øyvind Kongstun Arnesen, kreditering: Charlotte Sverdrup

Eksisterende aksjonærer og ansatte bidrar med NOK 55 millioner, mens Watrium AS skyter inn NOK 15 millioner av totalt MNOK 20 millioner fra nye aksjonærer.
«Studiene er relativt små, men gir klare signaler om at vaksinen kan gi positive kliniske effekter for pasientene», sier Øyvind Kongstun Arnesen som er administrerende direktør i Ultimovacs.

I de nye kliniske studiene som skal igangsettes ønsker selskapet å dokumentere at vaksinen kan gi betydelig behandlingsgevinst for kreftpasienter.

Ultimovacs er ett av flere norske selskaper med tilknytning til Oslo Cancer Cluster som ligger langt fremme i utviklingen av nye behandlingsformer mot kreft basert på immunterapi. Norge ligger langt fremme innenfor immunterapi og har et godt grunnlag for å utvikle en næring med internasjonalt potensial. «Vår teknologi, som har sitt utspring fra Radiumhospitalet, kan vise seg å gi et betydelig bidrag i utviklingen av nye metoder for kreftbehandling», sier Øyvind Kongstun Arnesen. Vaksinen vil over de neste 2-3 årene testes ut på mer enn 250 pasienter i flere land.

Ultimovacs har over det siste året styrket sin organisasjon vesentlig og har nå 10 ansatte.
«Vi har et svært kompetent team på plass for videre utprøving og kommersialisering av vaksinen internasjonalt», fortsetter Øyvind Kongstun Arnesen.

Ultimovacs har solide finansielle eiere som Gjelsten Holding AS, Canica AS, Sundt AS og nå kommer også Watrium AS inn som ny aksjonær. I den forbindelse vil Kristin Wilhelmsen fra Watrium tre inn i styret i Ultimovacs. Inven2 AS og Radiumhospitalets Forskningsstiftelse er også betydelige eiere i Ultimovacs.

Ultimovacs er verdsatt til NOK 475 millioner før innhenting av ny kapital. DNB Markets og Arctic Securities har bistått selskapet som finansielle rådgivere og tilretteleggere av transaksjonen.
«Vi er meget tilfreds med å ha en bred sammensetning av kapitalsterke, langsiktige og kompetente eiere som bidrar aktivt til den videre utviklingen av selskapet», sier styreleder Ketil Fjerdingen.

__________________________________________________________________________________

Ultimovacs AS er et norsk selskap som arbeider med å utvikle immunterapi mot kreft i form av en universell, terapeutisk kreftvaksine.  I dag har selskapet 10 ansatte som holder til i Oslo Cancer Cluster Innovasjonspark ved Radiumhospitalet. Selskapet er i ferd med å avslutte sitt fase I-program hvor man har fått data om sikkerhet, valg av dose og vaksinens evne til å aktivere immunsystemet. Med støtte i disse dataene går selskapet nå videre til fase II for å undersøke om vaksinen har positiv effekt på kreftsykdom. Ultimovacs største eiere er Gjelsten Holding AS, Inven2, Radiumhospitalets Forskningsstiftelse, Langøya Invest, Canica AS og Sundt AS.

Photocure with exciting news: FDA-approval of new packaging for bladder cancer product

New Cysview kit has an improved design providing healthcare professionals with an improved, simplified, and easy-to-use product.

 

Oslo Cancer Cluster member Photocure recently received the positive news that the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) has granted approval for an improved and more user-friendly packaging for Cysview. Regulatory approval in EU was granted in July 2016.

Diluent for Cysview is used to reconstitute the Cysview powder resulting in the Cysview solution. The diluent that is used to reconstitute the Cysview powder will now be provided in a prefilled syringe and in a needle free kit.

“This improvement is aligned with our mission to provide bladder cancer patients with access to treatments that improve their lives. The new Cysview kit will simplify the clinical use of Cysview both in the use of Blue Light Cystoscopy with Cysview during bladder cancer resection as well as the future launch of Cysview in the outpatient surveillance setting”, says Kjetil Hestdal, M.D., Ph.D., President and CEO, Photocure ASA.

 

 

About Hexvix®/Cysview®
Hexvix®/Cysview® (hexaminolevulinate hydro-chloride) is an innovative breakthrough technology in the diagnosis and management of non-muscle-invasive bladder cancer. It is designed to selectively target malignant cells in the bladder and induce fluorescence during a cystoscopic procedure using a blue light enabled cystoscope. Using Hexvix®/Cysview® as an adjunct to standard white light cystoscopy enables the urologist to better detect and remove lesions, leading to a reduced risk of recurrence.

Hexvix® is the tradename in Europe, Cysview® in U.S. and Canada. Hexvix® is marketed and sold by Photocure in the Nordic countries and in the US with the trade name Cysview®. Photocure has a strategic partnership with Ipsen for the commercialization of Hexvix in Europe, excluding the Nordic region.  Please refer to https://www.photocure.com/Partnering-with-Photocure/Our-partners for further information on our commercial partners.

 

About Photocure ASA
Photocure, headquartered in Oslo Norway, is a specialty pharmaceutical company and world leader in photodynamic technology. Based on our unique proprietary Photocure Technology® platform, Photocure develops and commercializes highly selective and effective solutions within disease areas with high unmet medical need, such as bladder cancer, HPV and precancerous cervical lesions, and skin conditions. Our aim is to provide solutions, which can improve health outcomes for patients worldwide. Photocure is listed on the Oslo Stock Exchange (OSE: PHO). Information about Photocure is available at www.photocure.com.

 

About Bladder Cancer
Bladder cancer is the fifth most common cancer in men with more than 330 000 new cases annually and more than 130 000 die of the disease1. It has a high recurrence rate with an average of 61% in one year and 78% over five years, making the lifetime costs of managing bladder cancer one of the highest amongst all cancers. It is a costly, potentially progressive disease for which patients have to undergo multiple cystoscopies because of the high risk of recurrence.

A recent paper on the economic burden of bladder cancer across the European Union estimates that bladder cancer cost the EU 4.9 billion Euro in 2012. There is an urgent need to improve both the diagnosis and the management of bladder cancer for the benefit of patients and healthcare systems alike.

Bladder cancer is classified into two types, non-muscle invasive bladder cancer (NMIBC) and muscle-invasive bladder cancer (MIBC), depending on the depth of invasion in the bladder wall. NMIBC is still in the inner layer of cells. These cancers are the most common (75%) of all bladder cancer cases and include the subtypes Ta, carcinoma in situ (CIS) and T1 lesions. MIBC is when the cancer has grown into deeper layers of the bladder wall. These cancers, including subtypes T2, T3 and T4, are more likely to spread and are harder to treat.

Targovax recruits the first patient in a trial with the oncolytic virus ONCOS-102 in malignant pleural mesothelioma

Oslo 1 July 2016: Targovax today announced that the first patient has been dosed in a phase Ib/II clinical trial evaluating ONCOS-102 for the treatment of malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM), a rare type of cancer in the lining of the lung, in combination with pemetrexed and cisplatin.

 

“New therapies are needed to provide better care for patients with mesothelioma, a highly malignant cancer with poor prognosis” says Dr Magnus Jaderberg, CMO of Targovax. “This clinical trial will provide data to evaluate the efficacy and safety of ONCOS-102 in first and second line mesothelioma patients, and we hope that our immunotherapy can provide additional benefit to chemotherapy, the existing standard of care.,

 

“In addition, treating the first patient in the first oncolytic virus trial of the merged company is of course an exciting moment for Targovax and all its stakeholders” adds Dr Jaderberg.

 

The trial is a randomized phase I/II clinical trial of 30 patients, with a phase Ib safety lead-in cohort of six patients, in first line and second line MPM patients who are eligible for treatment with pemetrexed and cisplatin. The trial’s main objectives are determination of safety, immune activation at lesional level and in peripheral blood, clinical response and the correlation between clinical outcome and the immunological activation. Several investigational sites in Europe will participate in this study. In addition to this trial, Targovax plans to initiate three immunotherapy combination trials with ONCOS-102 and one with its RAS peptide vaccine TG02 during the second half of 2016.

 

Malignant mesothelioma is a rare type of cancer often caused by exposure to asbestos. There are no curative treatments although surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy can sometimes help to improve patient prognosis and life expectancy. Pemetrexed and cisplatin is the only standard of care chemotherapy for malignant mesothelioma, but the median PFS/OS (progression-free survival/overall survival) from the initiation of treatment is only approximately 12 months.

 

ONCOS-102 is a purposefully engineered human serotype 5/3 adenovirus coding for human GM-CSF optimized to induce systemic anti-tumor T cell response in cancer patients. In a previous Phase I trial, ONCOS-102 treatment induced tumor specific immune activation both at systemic and lesional level. The immune activation was associated with clinical benefit.

For further information, please contact:

 

Gunnar Gårdemyr, CEO
Phone: +46 73 083 77 79
Email: ggardemyr@targovax.com

 

Øystein Soug, CFO
Phone: +47 906 56 525
Email: oystein.soug@targovax.com

 

Arming the patient’s immune system to fight cancer
Targovax is a clinical stage immuno-oncology company developing targeted immunotherapy treatments for cancer patients. Targovax has a broad and diversified immune therapy portfolio and aims to become a world leader in its area. The company is currently developing two complementary and highly targeted approaches in immuno-oncology.

 

ONCOS – 102 is a virus-based immunotherapy platform based on engineered oncolytic viruses armed with potent immune-stimulating transgenes targeting solid tumors. This treatment is designed to reactivate the immune system’s capacity to recognize and attack cancer cells.

 

TG01 and TG02 are part of a peptide-based immunotherapy platform targeting the difficult to treat RAS mutations found in more than 85% of pancreatic cancers, 50% of colorectal cancer and 20-30% of all cancers. Targovax is working towards demonstrating that TG vaccines will prolong time to cancer progression and increase survival.

 

These product candidates will be developed in combination with multiple treatments, including checkpoint inhibitors in several cancer indications. Targovax also has a number of other cancer immune therapy candidates in the early stages of development.

DoMore! receives Lighthouse project grant from the Norwegian Research Council

The Norwegian Research Council IKTPLUSS has selected The DoMore! project application as one of the 3 winners of the prestigious Lighthouse Project grant. The Lighthouse Project winning proposals were announced at the Norwegian E-health conference on the 26th april 2016.

 

The DoMore! project aims to explore the unique combination of academic and industrial competence within the project group to radically improve prognostication and hence treatment of cancer by using digital tools for pathology. ​The DoMore! project focuses on heterogene​​ity in cancer​ and is led by Institute Director Håvard Danielsen.​

​By largely digitalizing and automating diagnostics and prognostication of cancer, we can literally DoMore! and analyze a ​greater number of samples from the same tumor​,​ ​leading to a more precise diagnosis for each patient​ ​​​​Safe storage, analysis and prosessing of the​ ​B​ig ​D​ata​ the project will produce will also be handled by the project partners.

The ​DoMore!​ ​team ​is composed ​of experts within several fields, including: digital imaging, processing, robotics, pathology, cell biology, surgery and oncology, both in Norway and abroad​​. ​​Together, we will create solutions that will​​ ​​​​allow​ us to DoMore!, resulting in objective cancer diagnostics that can be made available to all patients.

Read more about the DoMore!-project here.

Apim, Vaccibody and Targovax will present at ICCS prior to BIO in San Fransisco

Oslo Cancer Cluster will for the 5th time arrange International Cancer Cluster Showcase, ICCS in collaboration with leading cluster partners from Europe and North America. 20 oncology biotechs will pitch their latest innovations and partnering opportunities.

Member companies pitching at ICCS are Apim Therapeutics, Vaccibody and Targovax.

Oslo Cancer Cluster will not feature a booth this year, but International Advisor Jutta Heix will be present at BIO and participate in partnering meetings as well as CEO Ketil Widerberg,