Lab Canada

Collaboration in GI cancers to enhance antibody generation capabilities

Toronto, ON — February 12, 2003 The GI Research Unit and St Michael’s Hospital (SMH) and Arius Research have announced they are collaborating to study antibodies and targets from colorectal tumors donated by patients.

St Michael’s Hospital is located in downtown Toronto and is associated with the University of Toronto. Arius Research is a medical biotechnology company working on rapid discovery and development of functional anti-cancer antibodies. To date, Arius has established a library of over 100 functional antibodies.

Under the terms of the agreement, patients who are undergoing surgery for colon cancer will be given the opportunity to donate some of their tumor tissues for research. Arius will use these tumor tissues to generate antibodies as a first step in looking for novel cancer drugs and targets. The antibodies will go through Arius’ screening program to pick out those that can target, react with and kill cancer cells. Cancer killing antibodies then go into development as potential new treatments to help other cancer patients down the road.

“Targeted therapies are the future of better cancer treatment and we are in an excellent position to contribute to research that will make targeted therapies a reality,” says Dr Norman Marcon of the GI Research Unit. “Patients who need treatment and diagnosis for cancers of the digestive system are referred to our unit by physicians from all over the province and Canada.”