Gene Network Sciences announces broad cancer collaboration with UCSF and initial results

Cambridge 27 May 2009Gene Network Sciences Inc. (GNS) has entered into a research collaboration with the University of California San Francisco Cancer Center (UCSF) aimed at accelerating cancer research and drug development across several therapeutic areas. This collaboration will combine the clinical and research oncology expertise of UCSF with the computational expertise and supercomputer-driven REFS platform of GNS. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

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GNS and UCSF have utilized REFS to discover and validate novel mediators of the cell cycle transition, which is a critical determinant of the rate of cancer cell proliferation and tumour growth. These results were presented by UCSF researcher Dr. Rina Gendelman, a post-doctoral fellow in Dr. W. Michael Korn's laboratory, at the American Association for Cancer Research 2009 meeting on April 18-22 in Denver, during which Dr. Gendelman received an AACR-Susan G. Komen Scholar-in-Training Award. GNS and prominent UCSF investigators Dr. Joe Gray, Dr. Frank McCormick, and Dr. W. Michael Korn will continue the collaboration through a number of additional projects.

Dr. Korn, who is an Associate Professor at UCSF, will lead the UCSF-GNS research partnership. The parties will continue with research to elucidate the RAS-MAPK and PI3K cancer pathways, pathways critical for initiation and progression of many cancers, by building models of breast, pancreatic, and esophageal cancer based on data from ongoing research at UCSF using the REFS platform and simulation of these models. The discoveries from the ongoing research are expected to include potential novel drug targets in those cancer types.

"GNS is excited to be working with UCSF, a world-class research and clinical institution, to tackle key current issues in cancer research", stated Dr. Iya Khalil, Executive Vice President and co-founder of GNS. "Our collaborative work with UCSF is one of several examples of GNS's applying our supercomputer-driven REFS platform to accelerate better treatments for patients with cancer."

UCSF is a university dedicated to promoting health worldwide through advanced biomedical research, graduate-level education in the life sciences and health professions, and excellence in patient care.

Gene Network Sciences is an expert in biosimulation with its ability to derive molecular mechanisms of drugs and diseases directly from molecular profiling and clinical data. Based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and Ithaca, New York, GNS uses its REFS technology in pharmaceutical and clinical settings to rapidly turn combinations of genetic, genomic, and clinical measurements into models of disease progression and drug response.

These models are then simulated to discover both new targets for drug intervention and genetic markers of drug response that allow patients who will respond to a given drug treatment to be matched to a particular clinical trial. By discovering how and why specific sets of genes and drug candidates impact human biology, GNS technology enables the rapid development of breakthrough drug and diagnostic products. More company news can be found in the VMW May 2009 article Gene Network Sciences announces brain cancer collaboration with M.D. Anderson.


Source: Gene Network Sciences

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