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TRON. (10/18/12). "Press Release: TRON and TheraCode together with Merck Begin Collaboration on Identification and Development of Biomarkers for Antigen-specific Cancer Immunotherapy". Mainz.

Region Region Germany
Organisations Organisation TRON – Translationale Onkologie an der Universitätsmedizin der Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz gGmbH
  Group University of Mainz (Johannes Gutenberg University)
  Organisation 2 Theracode GmbH
  Today BioNTech Diagnostics GmbH
  Group BioNTech (Group)
Products Product biomarker discovery services
  Product 2 cancer immunotherapy (immuno-oncology, I-O)
Persons Person Sahin, Ugur (BioNTech 201207 Managing Director BioNTech + Ribological GmbH)
  Person 2 Kring, Michael Maximilian (High Tech Corporate Services GmbH 201402 Managing Director + interim CFO/CEO others)

The German research institute TRON and the in-vitro diagnostics company TheraCode together with Merck Darmstadt have signed a collaboration in the field of individualized cancer diagnostics and therapies. The goal of the collaboration is the identification of biomarkers for an antigen specific cancer immunotherapy currently under clinical development. This therapy will allow a more targeted treatment of cancer patients. The project is funded in part by the Germany Ministry for Education and Research.

The collaboration is part of a long term research and development strategy that will pool and translate the interdisciplinary experience of all partners into the development of drugs and diagnostics. The goal is a detailed analysis of the patients' immune condition prior to therapy and after an induced immune response. A further goal is the monitoring of the effects of the therapy on tumor growth. Merck will lead the project and will investigate micro-RNA patterns in the patients' plasma. On behalf of Merck, the University Medical Center of the Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz, Germany, will characterize the cellular immune response. As a center of excellence for "Next Generation Sequencing", TRON will validate DNA and RNA biomarker candidates by employing high-throughput technologies for decoding each patient's genetic tumor information. TheraCode will then characterize the tumor specific antibody profiles through quality-controlled, innovative proprietary technologies, which will allow a prediction of the therapeutic effects.

"The collaboration with Merck is an excellent example of how we can join forces by pooling existing expertise in drug development and biomarker research", commented Prof. Ugur Sahin, Managing Scientific Director of TRON. "We at TRON are using our highly specialized platforms to elucidate the mechanisms of action of therapeutics and to identify disease-relevant biomarkers".

Michael Kring, Chief Executive Officer of TheraCode added: "With Merck and TRON we have partnered with two highly competent partners that are experienced in in vitro diagnostics and immunotherapies. With this collaboration we expect to create enormous value through transfer of identified and validated biomarkers into product development of biomarker-based in-vitro diagnostic medical devices."

Christine Castle
TRON - Translationale Onkologie an der
Universitätsmedizin der Johannes Gutenberg-
Universität Mainz
+49 (0) 6131 178166

Record changed: 2017-04-02


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