Singapore Eye Research Institute (SERI) has signed an agreement with AYOXXA, an international Biotech company (headquartered in Cologne) to work on validation of a new multiplexing platform developed by the company. This platform can be used to detect protein biomarkers as a part of developing ophthalmic diagnostic tools.
“We are pleased to start this collaboration with such a prestigious research institute like SERI,” said Michael Rasche, Corporate Vice President Global Commercial Operations of AYOXXA Biosystems GmbH. “By gaining access to very low-volume samples from the eye we can prove the benefits of our new protein multiplex technology beyond the research segment in clinical settings. We want to closely work with SERI in the ophthalmology space and potentially use our technology as new diagnostic application in the treatment of age-related macular degeneration (AMD).”
“SERI has had a long and broad history of working with large and mid-size pharmaceutical and ophthalmic companies, and we are now keen to expand our collaboration scope to working with promising start-up companies from around the world, be it biotech, diagnostics or device companies, with our goal of positioning Singapore as one of the world hubs for innovative technology development in ophthalmology” said Prof. Tin Aung, Executive Director of SERI. ”The partnership with AYOXXA can potentially enable the co-development of a range of ophthalmic diagnostic tools, beginning with AMD. Having a validated diagnostic platform can potentially help better assess patients and more objectively steer their treatment. It can also potentially assist in the development of new treatments.”
Research teams led by Dr. Dieter Trau, Associate Professor at the Department of Biomedical Engineering of the National University of Singapore and Co-founder of AYOXXA, and Prof. Wong Tien Yin, one of world’s top eye researchers and Medical Director at the Singapore National Eye Centre (SNEC), will closely work together during this pilot study.
The pilot study will deal with Angiogenic retinal diseases (ARDs) including age-related macular degeneration (AMD) as they are the leading causes of blindness in elderly patients. Cytokines involved in inflammation and growth factors are known to play a significant role in the pathogenesis of these diseases. Sensitive and reliable biomarker assays are needed for its diagnosis and therapy. Samples need to be taken directly from the vitreous and aqueous compartments of patients’ eyes, which is quite an invasive method. Also, obtaining sufficient quatities of the vitreous and aqueous solutions might be a challenge.
Hence, the new platform developed by AYOXXA will be used to validate protein biomarkers in these solutions as this platform needs very small quantities of patients’ samples. Additionally, this new platform is fast, reliable and less time-consuming.
This technology might be the answer to a fast, sensitive, reliable and economic testing system for AMD and other ophthalmic diseases, as well as to enable therapy monitoring for the benefit of both, patients and clinicians.
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