CCAB blog – February 25, 2019

By CCAB - February 26, 2019 11:07 am (leave your thoughts)

Supporting Canadian life sciences companies

by Robert Verhagen, CEO

Last week, the Centre for the Commercialization of Antibodies and Biologics (CCAB) was proud to sponsor the Ontario Bioscience Innovation Organization (OBIO) Investment Summit in which 2 of CCAB’s portfolio companies were participating. As the newest addition to CCAB, Empirica Therapeutics, is tackling one of the most difficult to treat brain cancers – glioblastoma with antibody-based therapeutics. It joins ImmunoBiochem Corporation as one of the promising young companies with which CCAB is working, providing them with a tailored approach to move their therapeutics along the pipeline toward the clinic. Just over a year ago, CCAB launched a new business strategy aimed at supporting scientist-entrepreneurs who are developing therapeutic innovations. The goal of this exciting new strategy is to attract additional investment to support innovative Canadian life sciences companies.

It’s a time of great potential for antibody-based therapies. For example, chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy has led to remarkable clinical results in patients with certain types of blood cancers. Researchers, including those at Empirica Therapeutics, continue to explore how this approach may be applied to other types of cancer. Similarly, the lead molecule in development at ImmunoBiochem is an Antibody-Drug Conjugate (ADC) with promising potential in triple-negative breast cancer and other solid tumour indications.

Beyond its support of emerging biotech companies, CCAB is offering services to help potential clients and the surrounding research community looking for antibody and protein production expertise:

  • C-Lab is CCAB’s in-house laboratory team offering a suite of antibody and protein production needs by offering a full suite of services, working with academic and industry clients.
  • CCAB has partnered with MédiMabs and the University of Toronto MedStore for distribution of its portfolio of antibody reagents, which includes antibodies towards novel antigen targets that may help the research community study specific signaling pathways.

CCAB’s achievements are, of course, only possible because of the efforts of a group of dedicated individuals – from the business development team researching and identifying opportunities, to the scientific team strengthening and expanding C-Lab’s antibody and protein production services. Thank you team.

CCAB anticipates establishing new partnerships this year that will support and create new life sciences companies. As Toronto’s biotech network continues to mature, we look forward to working with even more of the innovators and experts that seek to develop more effective therapies to devastating diseases.


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