Biosensors: An Emerging Technology in Pharmaceuticals

Kutubkhan Bohari | July 19, 2022 | 233 views | Read Time : 41:11 min

Biosensors
The evolution of biosensors has piqued the interest of researchers, scientists, and investors in the last few decades. With the constant development of biosensors, the devices have emerged as detection equipment to assess the presence of chemicals in living organisms, antibodies, biological molecules, or enzymes.

Biosensors have garnered substantial importance in the discovery of several drugs and have increased their significance in biopharmaceutical product monitoring development and the field of next screening.

Biosensors Transforms Drug Analysis and Drug Delivery

Many research groups and biotech companies have recently investigated several novel biosensors with high sensitivity, including immunosensors, enzyme-based, tissue-based, enzyme-based, DNA biosensors, piezoelectric, and thermal biosensors. These biosensors offer numerous advantages, including exceptional sensitivity, low-cost instrumentation, operational simplicity, automation potential, and inherent miniaturization.

They have provided elegant pathways for the identification of even trace amounts of analytical agents of biological significance, ranging from macromolecules (e.g., antigens and disease biomarkers) and small molecules (e.g., haptens and natural toxins) to bacteria, cells, and viruses.

The use of biosensing has become critical in the fields of drug discovery, biomedicine, drug analysis, and pharmacology. This growing importance of biosensing has resulted in the development of precise, reliable, and powerful analytical tools based on biological sensing elements, such as biosensors.

On account of this, the demand for biosensors is forecast to create a dollar opportunity of around $25 billion by 2030's end. With this growing significance in the pharmaceutical and medical industries, a substantial rise in research and development for biosensors is being witnessed all over the world.

The Road Ahead

In recent years, there has been a lot of interest in the development of biosensors for analytical purposes, increasing the applications of biosensors in resolving a potentially large number of analytical challenges and problems across various pharmaceutical and medical domains.

Also, prominent companies are focusing on the introduction of advanced wearable biosensors, integrated with innovative technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT) for real-time data availability. This will assist in making better clinical decisions and early detection of health events.

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For decades, the pharmaceutical industry has counted on state-of-the-art technologies to ensure the market entry of safe and dependable medications. The recent pandemic has shown how important it is for drug companies to get new drugs and vaccines on the market as soon as possible. The incorporation of artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies has greatly benefited the consumer healthcare business and the pharmaceutical industry. These technologies have been indispensable in the field of augmented intelligence, where they are used for applications such as disease detection and diagnosis, research and development, drug manufacturing, and others. How is AI Being Used Across the Pharmaceutical Sector? AI and ML are finding a plethora of applications across the pharmaceutical sector, starting from managing the process of clinical trial databases to drug discovery and disease diagnosis and treatment. These advanced technologies have further gained immense popularity with the advent of the COVID pandemic and the race to discover effective vaccines. The top-level uses of AI across the pharmaceutical sector are as follows Personalized Treatment/ Digital Therapeutics – AI is extensively being used to identify and assist drug developers to provide reliable and accurate insights for developing personalized therapeutics. Disease Identification/ Suggestive Treatment – With robust assessing abilities, AI is finding applications for the diagnosis of diseases ranging from Covid-19 to oncology to degeneration in the eyes. Drug Discovery and Manufacturing – AI assists in screening and comparing the predicted success rate of drug compounds based on biological factors with the results of the initial screening process such as rapid RNA and DNA quantification. Clinical Trials – The technology helps in identifying the most suitable candidate for the clinical trial on the basis of disease conditions, history, and additional attributes covering infection rates, ethnicity, and demographics to study the impact of the drug. The Way Ahead With growing applications in the development of novel therapeutic medications, shifting patient inclination toward personalized medicines, and the introduction of advanced medical fields such as gene therapy, AI is estimated to transform the pharmaceutical

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PHARMA TECH

Modern Phenotypic Drug Discovery

Article | June 2, 2022

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You're not going to be able (realistically) to recapitulate all the features of a human disease, so you will probably find yourself concentrating on certain features that you can make the case for driving a project on. I was very happy to see this paper reference Jack Scannell's paper on translatability (blogged about here), because its point is crucial to the whole phenotypic screening endeavour. If your underlying assay is flawed, there is nothing you can do in any other part of the project to make up for it. A poorly translatable assay is a sign that you should spend your time trying to fix it, or to go do something entirely different instead. It is not a sign that you should just keep on going, because "it's the best thing we've got". If it isn't good enough, it isn't good enough. I don't get to quote A. E. Houseman much around here, but he's right: "The toil of all that be. Helps not the primal fault; It rains into the sea. And still the sea is salt." If you don't fix your assay up front, you are raining into the sea.

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Verizon Sourcing LLC | August 10, 2022

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Salarius Pharmaceuticals and VolitionRx Enter into R&D Collaboration Agreement

Salarius Pharmaceuticals, Inc. | August 03, 2022

Salarius Pharmaceuticals, Inc. a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing therapies for patients with cancer in need of new treatment options, and VolitionRx Limited a multinational epigenetics company, today announced the signing of a research and development collaboration to advance rapid epigenetic profiling using Volition’s Nu.Q® technology to support further development of Salarius’ clinical stage drug, seclidemstat. Seclidemstat, a novel oral, reversible, targeted LSD1 inhibitor that affects gene expression, is currently in Phase 1/2 clinical studies for solid and hematologic cancers where LSD1 is implicated in disease progression. Nu.Q® has been developed as simple, easy-to-use, cost-effective blood tests to diagnose and monitor a range of life-altering diseases including cancer in humans and animals. “We are delighted to collaborate with Volition and believe its Nu.Q® technology may provide valuable biomarker information as we seek to advance the development of seclidemstat in multiple clinical indications. Biomarkers allow for a noninvasive method for determining target engagement and potential drug activity in patients. So, this exciting research collaboration with Volition Rx Limited provides another tool to aid in the development of seclidemstat in clinic.” David Arthur, Chief Executive Officer of Salarius Gael Forterre, Chief Commercial Officer of Volition, added, “We are excited to be collaborating with Salarius as part of our Nu.Q® Discover program which offers biopharma companies and academia access to our state-of-the-art assays for rapid epigenetic profiling. We are looking forward to supporting Salarius in the development and release of their groundbreaking seclidemstat therapy, to directly benefit patients with cancer.” About VolitionRx VolitionRx Limited is a multinational epigenetics company that applies its Nucleosomics™ platform through its subsidiaries to develop simple, easy-to-use, cost-effective blood tests to help diagnose and monitor a range of life-altering diseases including some cancers and diseases associated with NETosis such as sepsis and COVID-19. Early diagnosis and monitoring have the potential not only to prolong the life of patients but also to improve their quality of life. The tests are based on the science of Nucleosomics, which is the practice of identifying and measuring nucleosomes in the bloodstream or other bodily fluid to indicate that disease is present. Volition is primarily focused on human diagnostics and monitoring but also has a subsidiary focused on animal diagnostics and monitoring. Volition's research and development activities are centered in Belgium, with an innovation laboratory and office in the U.S. and additional offices in London and Singapore. For more information, please visit the Volition Rx Limited website. About Salarius Pharmaceuticals Salarius Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing therapies for patients with cancer in need of new treatment options. Salarius’ product portfolio includes seclidemstat, Salarius’ lead candidate, which is being studied as a potential treatment for pediatric cancers, sarcomas and other cancers with limited treatment options, and SP-3164, an oral small molecule protein degrader. Seclidemstat is currently in a Phase 1/2 clinical trial for relapsed/refractory Ewing’s sarcoma and certain additional sarcomas that share a similar biology, also referred to as Ewing’s-related or FET-rearranged sarcomas. Seclidemstat has received fast track, orphan drug and rare pediatric disease designations for Ewing’s sarcoma from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Salarius is also exploring seclidemstat’s potential in several cancers with high unmet medical need, with an investigator-initiated Phase 1/2 clinical study in hematologic cancers underway at MD Anderson Cancer Center. Salarius has received financial support from the National Pediatric Cancer Foundation to advance the Ewing’s sarcoma clinical program and was a recipient of a Product Development Award from the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas.

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Pharma Tech Holdings SA Obtains a Capital Commitment Agreement of CHF 30 million from Global Investor LDA Capital

Pharma Tech | August 09, 2022

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Verizon Sourcing LLC | August 10, 2022

Verizon Business has been selected to manage Astellas Pharma Inc’s global network infrastructure. The network transformation will enable Astellas to harness advanced technologies to help reduce drug development timelines, healthcare costs and drive new revenue opportunities for the Japanese pharmaceutical multinational. Headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, Astellas is a global pharmaceutical company involved in the research, development, manufacture, and marketing of innovative new drugs under the vision of “Stand on the forefront of healthcare change to turn innovative science into VALUE for patients”. The company employs 14,000 employees worldwide. The company has identified digital transformation as a key driver of its business growth and began the search for a global partner to transform all aspects of its global technology infrastructure including building, designing and executing a next-generation secure network. In particular, Astellas was looking for a scalable and predictable platform that could seamlessly manage tens of thousands of devices and endpoints across Astellas’ 70+ global locations across a virtualized multi-sourced environment. Verizon’s relationship with Astellas stretches back more than a decade. In 2016, Astellas successfully deployed Verizon’s Secure Cloud Interconnect solution to provide a high-bandwidth secure connection to its Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure cloud services. Verizon’s current remit includes the build and deployment of Astellas’ global integrated network with a full suite of managed services, including Managed Wide Area Network, Local Area Network, Managed Security Services Secure Gateway, Zero Trust Network Access and Unified Communications and Collaboration as a Service. “From R&D to sales, we are seeing enormous amounts of data and intelligence flow through our business, across our 70 locations around the world. We want to ensure that we have a future-proof network in order to utilize cutting-edge technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, machine learning and robotics to make data-driven decisions to deliver better value for our patients. Our network transformation will underpin the next phase of our growth.” Shinya Suda, Senior Vice President, Information Systems, Astellas “The network is transformative in its ability to enable innovation and growth and Astellas is changing the way they are using the tools at their disposal to completely revolutionize their business. This is truly a watershed moment for the pharmaceutical industry as companies grapple with the pressures of reducing time and costs for the development of drugs while improving patient care and value. We’re proud to have been a part of Astellas’ growth journey for more than a decade,” said Robert Le Busque, Regional Vice-President, Verizon Business Group, Asia Pacific. Today’s announcement builds on the company’s network-as-a-service foundation and supports its private networks, mobile edge compute and business solutions vectors of growth. Verizon Communications Inc. was formed on June 30, 2000 and is one of the world’s leading providers of technology and communications services. Headquartered in New York City and with a presence around the world, Verizon generated revenues of $133.6 billion in 2021. The company offers data, video and voice services and solutions on its award-winning networks and platforms, delivering on customers’ demand for mobility, reliable network connectivity, security and control. VERIZON’S ONLINE MEDIA CENTER News releases, stories, media contacts and other resources are available at verizon.com/news. News releases are also available through an RSS feed.

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Salarius Pharmaceuticals and VolitionRx Enter into R&D Collaboration Agreement

Salarius Pharmaceuticals, Inc. | August 03, 2022

Salarius Pharmaceuticals, Inc. a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing therapies for patients with cancer in need of new treatment options, and VolitionRx Limited a multinational epigenetics company, today announced the signing of a research and development collaboration to advance rapid epigenetic profiling using Volition’s Nu.Q® technology to support further development of Salarius’ clinical stage drug, seclidemstat. Seclidemstat, a novel oral, reversible, targeted LSD1 inhibitor that affects gene expression, is currently in Phase 1/2 clinical studies for solid and hematologic cancers where LSD1 is implicated in disease progression. Nu.Q® has been developed as simple, easy-to-use, cost-effective blood tests to diagnose and monitor a range of life-altering diseases including cancer in humans and animals. “We are delighted to collaborate with Volition and believe its Nu.Q® technology may provide valuable biomarker information as we seek to advance the development of seclidemstat in multiple clinical indications. Biomarkers allow for a noninvasive method for determining target engagement and potential drug activity in patients. So, this exciting research collaboration with Volition Rx Limited provides another tool to aid in the development of seclidemstat in clinic.” David Arthur, Chief Executive Officer of Salarius Gael Forterre, Chief Commercial Officer of Volition, added, “We are excited to be collaborating with Salarius as part of our Nu.Q® Discover program which offers biopharma companies and academia access to our state-of-the-art assays for rapid epigenetic profiling. We are looking forward to supporting Salarius in the development and release of their groundbreaking seclidemstat therapy, to directly benefit patients with cancer.” About VolitionRx VolitionRx Limited is a multinational epigenetics company that applies its Nucleosomics™ platform through its subsidiaries to develop simple, easy-to-use, cost-effective blood tests to help diagnose and monitor a range of life-altering diseases including some cancers and diseases associated with NETosis such as sepsis and COVID-19. Early diagnosis and monitoring have the potential not only to prolong the life of patients but also to improve their quality of life. The tests are based on the science of Nucleosomics, which is the practice of identifying and measuring nucleosomes in the bloodstream or other bodily fluid to indicate that disease is present. Volition is primarily focused on human diagnostics and monitoring but also has a subsidiary focused on animal diagnostics and monitoring. Volition's research and development activities are centered in Belgium, with an innovation laboratory and office in the U.S. and additional offices in London and Singapore. For more information, please visit the Volition Rx Limited website. About Salarius Pharmaceuticals Salarius Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing therapies for patients with cancer in need of new treatment options. Salarius’ product portfolio includes seclidemstat, Salarius’ lead candidate, which is being studied as a potential treatment for pediatric cancers, sarcomas and other cancers with limited treatment options, and SP-3164, an oral small molecule protein degrader. Seclidemstat is currently in a Phase 1/2 clinical trial for relapsed/refractory Ewing’s sarcoma and certain additional sarcomas that share a similar biology, also referred to as Ewing’s-related or FET-rearranged sarcomas. Seclidemstat has received fast track, orphan drug and rare pediatric disease designations for Ewing’s sarcoma from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Salarius is also exploring seclidemstat’s potential in several cancers with high unmet medical need, with an investigator-initiated Phase 1/2 clinical study in hematologic cancers underway at MD Anderson Cancer Center. Salarius has received financial support from the National Pediatric Cancer Foundation to advance the Ewing’s sarcoma clinical program and was a recipient of a Product Development Award from the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas.

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Pharma Tech Holdings SA Obtains a Capital Commitment Agreement of CHF 30 million from Global Investor LDA Capital

Pharma Tech | August 09, 2022

Pharma Tech Holding SA announced it has secured a CHF 30 million investment to support its portfolio investments from LDA Capital Ltd, a global investment group with expertise in cross border transactions including the agriculture, Agri-tech, and CBD industries. Established in 2019, PTH is a Swiss based holding company, which invests into innovative businesses with high technological value and scalability potential, mainly in Switzerland and Europe, with a focus on the health-tech, Agri-tech, and functional food. This investment will allow PTH to mainly invest and support its portfolio company Blue Sky Swisse SA a JV between PTH and listed company IGEA PHARMA NV IGPH - ISIN NL0012768675. BSS focuses on the extraction of natural active principles from vegetable matrices, vegetable waste, and renewable sources to deliver B2B products under the form of CBD oil, Terpenes and Waxes. The factory located in Biasca, will be built to the state of art of extraction technology by super critical CO2 and will be energy self-sufficient through the use of solar photovoltaic panels and district heating. BSS will grant for highest CBD quality also due to a proprietary extraction process, starting from the farming performed under strict control and culminating with the immediate freezing of the flowers after harvest, with the target to also sell “all natural” formulations to increase bioavailability thus enhancing the possible applications. Last, but not least, BSS will invest in the agricultural raw material chain and will create an aeroponic green house in Ticino, to deliver a high quality GMP Pharmaceutical CBD oil. LDA Capital agreed to commit an amount of up to CHF 30 million in cash within a maximum of three years. This Capital Commitment will be released based on drawdowns by PTH, that PTH has the right to exercise at its sole discretion. “We’re thrilled with this partnership and are so glad that LDA Capital recognizes the value of PTH and its portfolio company, with the aim of creating one of the most innovative hub for health-tech, agri-tech and functional food,” Sabina Del Nigro, CEO at PTH About Pharma Tech Holding Pharma Tech Holding SA is a holding company based in Lugano, Switzerland, which invests into innovative businesses with high technological value and scalability potential, mainly in Switzerland and Europe, with a focus on the health-tech, Agri-tech, and functional food. About LDA Capital LDA Capital is a global alternative investment group with expertise in cross border transactions worldwide. Our team has dedicated their careers to international & cross border opportunities having collectively executed over 250 transactions in both the public and private middle markets across 43 countries with aggregate transaction values of over US$11 billion.

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