Biomed startup readies compounds to treat, diagnose cancers


calidum_logoOMAHA, Nebraska (April 14, 2016)—A new startup company, Calidum Inc, was formed around an innovative approach for simultaneously treating and diagnosing some of the deadliest cancers, UNeMed announced today.

Calidum exclusively licensed the technology from UNeMed, the technology transfer and commercialization office for the University of Nebraska Medical Center. Calidum will commercialize the patented, innovative work of Janina Baranowska-Kortylewicz, PhD, a professor and radiochemist at UNMC. Along with her co-inventor, Zbigniew P. Kortylewicz, PhD, she developed novel compounds that target cancer cells with remarkable accuracy and efficiency.

Calidum’s compounds are considered “theranostic” because they can be used as a diagnostic tool and a therapeutic treatment at the same time. The compounds are tagged with a radioactive isotope that will help clinicians better diagnose, track and treat various cancers that include prostate, ovarian, and triple negative breast cancer—an aggressive subtype of breast cancer that is notoriously difficult to treat.

Calidum’s compounds could also be used on two rare forms of brain tumors, neuroblastoma and glioblastoma.

Due to the strong safety and activity data of Calidum’s lead compound, CDM-P123I, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved a Phase-1 clinical trial in prostate cancer patients.

CDM-P123I specifically targets proteins on prostate cancer cells, thus it can both identify and effectively destroy those cells with dramatically reduced side-effects and higher specificity than current techniques. Calidum will begin its Phase 1 trial for prostate cancer within the next 12 months, while completing the necessary preclinical studies to initiate human trials for the additional targets in the next three years.

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