Evogene (EVGN) Announces Agreement with Sheba Medical Center for Joint Microbiome Clinical Research
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Biomica Ltd. (Biomica), an emerging biopharmaceutical company developing innovative microbiome-based therapeutics and a subsidiary of Evogene Ltd. (NASDAQ: EVGN) (TASE: EVGN), reported today that it signed a collaboration agreement with the Sheba Medical Center (Sheba) in Tel Aviv, Israel, a hospital ranked by Newsweek magazine as one of the top 10 globally of 2022.
In the framework of the joint work, Biomica and Sheba's Microbiome Innovation Center, headed by Dr. Yael Haberman, will conduct deep sequencing and high-resolution microbiome analysis of samples obtained from patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). This analysis will enable the identification of potential profiles, biomarkers and therapeutic entities in order to gain a deeper understanding of the human microbiome in IBD patients. Based on the new findings that are expected to come out of these joint studies, Biomica's goal is to expand its expertise in this field, furthering its ability to develop new therapeutics, supporting unmet medical needs and bringing better IBD patient care.
IBD includes conditions such as ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease, which are chronic, debilitating, non-infectious, inflammatory diseases of the digestive tract. However, despite the recent introduction of new modalities and therapeutics, many patients do not respond well, and others' response may diminish over time. The global IBD treatment market size has been valued at USD 19.2 billion in 2020.
Dr. Yael Haberman at The Sheba Medical Center, stated: "I am very much looking forward to our collaboration with Biomica, a pioneer in the IBD space and a developer of novel therapeutics based on the human microbiome. I believe our work together has great potential and I hope will lead to improved outcomes for sufferers of IBD."
Dr. Elran Haber, Biomica Chief Executive Officer, stated: "I am very excited today with the launch of this joint research effort between one of the world's leading hospitals, Sheba Medical Center, and Biomica. Our goal is that the findings from this study will be highly complementary to Biomica's previous work on IBD, and advance our ability to identify and utilize specific entities in the microbiome, providing improved therapeutics for this devastating disease. We see great potential in this collaboration with Dr. Haberman and I hope this will pave the path for additional joint studies focusing on improving patients' care in IBD."
As was previously announced in November 2021, Biomica reported positive pre-clinical results in its IBD program following the evaluation of its product candidate BMC333, in a DSS-induced colitis model. These results demonstrated BMC333's ability to significantly reduce intestinal tissue damage resulting from inflammation. Biomica expects to begin the scale-up development processes of BMC333 during 2022, in preparation for the production of an initial clinical batch.
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