Bridging Connections and Insights from Investment Conferences

Bridging Connections and Insights from Investment Conferences

By Punit Dhillon, CEO and President of OncoSec Medical Incorporated

After the conclusion of several conferences this past month, I’ve had time to reflect on key takeaways and principal trends emerging in the healthcare sector. Despite less than stellar market conditions, speakers at conferences (such as J.P. Morgan 2016 and Bio CEO) and ancillary events remained optimistic and highlighted important insights into the future of healthcare. After a busy schedule with non-stop meetings and presentations, I returned home confident in OncoSec’s place in the burgeoning cancer immunotherapy landscape.

Avoiding Skin Cancer

While skin cancer is often caused by UV radiation (around 90% of non-melanoma skin cancers being caused by it), you’re never too old or too tanned to start avoiding skin cancer. Genetic damage in the skin caused by sun exposure permanently increases your chances of skin cancer so the sooner you start avoiding skin cancer the better. Here are a few things you can start acting on, in order to immediately start reducing your risk of getting skin cancer:

Why does OncoSec use Immunotherapy?

In biotech, there are many different approaches or veins of science used, in the research and creation of potential treatments, drugs, and delivery methods. For centuries, the health industry has relied on invasive surgery and curative procedures that can have dangerous, long-term side effects for patients. However, there are some newer scientific discoveries that have allowed us to move towards more effective treatment options that are also less damaging to our bodies. One of these categories of research is that of immunotherapy: using the body against disease, instead of relying on as many non-targeted, exterior factors.

Clinical Trials, Data, and Staging

The biotech and medical industries have come a long way. While many marvels have been created – such as vaccines, treatments and prosthetics – some of the research could pose dangers to the public, if it is not used correctly or if the initial findings from early experimentation are wrong. It is for these reasons that the FDA requires proper clinical testing (or clinical trials) to be performed, before they are eligible for public use. We would like to explore what exactly a clinical trial is, the data they collect and how a clinical trial moves on to the next phase:

What is ImmunoPulse?

Many cancer research and treatment companies create and utilize various methods of treatment. These may be a combination of existing techniques or a new technology developed by the company itself. At OncoSec, one of our treatment methods is ImmunoPulse: a system we’re testing for the treatment of late-stage skin cancer, including merkel cell carcinoma, cutaneous T-cell lymphoma, and metastatic melanoma. With pending announcements surrounding interim data from our phase II trial for metastatic melanoma coming up soon, we would like to review a bit of the description of our ImmunoPulse treatment option currently being tested.

In OncoSec’s active pursuit of knowledge in the cancer and biotech realms, we come across a vast number of articles that we believe exhibit strong signs of importance, within our industry. While we regularly share some of these with our online community, we would like to start highlighting certain news articles, study data, and other materials. Here are three articles we are currently reading:

The treatment of many cancer types can vary quite widely. Different cancers and stages denote slightly different methods of treatment. While the early stages of some cancers – especially skin cancer – can sometimes require only minor surgery, others can require highly damaging doses of radiation and chemotherapy. With immunotherapy, companies like OncoSec are hoping to increase the number of available cancer treatments that are less damaging to the body. One specific cancer that we’re targeting is Merkel cell carcinoma.

Study to Evaluate the Effects of ImmunoPulse in Combination with Anti-CTLA4, Anti-PD1 and Anti-PDL-1 Therapies

 SAN DIEGO – June 11, 2013 – OncoSec Medical Inc. (OTCQB: ONCS), a company developing its advanced-stage ImmunoPulse DNA-based immunotherapy and NeoPulse therapy to treat solid tumors, signed a Sponsored Research Agreement (SRA) with Old Dominion University (ODU) and the Frank Reidy Research Center for Bioelectrics. Under the agreement, OncoSec and the University will collaborate on nonclinical research focused on developing new technology related to electroporation and delivery of different agents into solid tumors by electroporation.

The first research experiment under this SRA will evaluate the effects of ImmunoPulse in combination with Anti-CTLA4, Anti-PD1 and Anti-PDL-1 in a melanoma mouse model. The study will commence this month and data from these experiments will be announced at a later date.

“Although results from ongoing Phase 2 studies have demonstrated ImmunoPulse is a potentially effective monotherapy for the treatment of skin cancers such as melanoma and Merkel cell carcinoma, OncoSec continues to evaluate opportunities where ImmunoPulse can be combined with other therapies to either improve its effectiveness or broaden the use of ImmunoPulse into other indications,” said Punit Dhillon, President and CEO of OncoSec Medical.

Mr. Dhillon continued, “The signing of this research agreement with ODU enables the company to determine which combination approaches are most effective and will help guide the company in the development of ImmunoPulse for its melanoma program and other solid tumor malignancies. The recent data announced at ASCO demonstrating the benefit of combining Ipilimumab (Anti-CTLA-4) with Nivolimumab (Anti-PD-1) for the treatment of advanced-stage melanoma, provides further support toward OncoSec’s efforts to expand the use of ImmunoPulse through the evaluation of different combination approaches to assess synergistic effects.”

The principal investigator of the study will be Dr. Richard Heller, one of the world’s leading pioneers in electroporation and gene delivery. Dr. Heller sits on OncoSec’s Scientific Advisory Board and has more than 25 years of experience in evaluating effects of electric pulses on biological systems.

Dr. Heller said, “We are excited to be collaborating with OncoSec. The combination of immune modulating agents to treat aggressive cancers like melanoma will further the scientific community’s understanding of these therapies. ImmunoPulse has continued to demonstrate a clear safety profile with promising clinical results, so we are looking forward to learn about the benefits of these new combinations.”

About Frank Reidy Research Center for Bioelectrics

The mission of the Center is to increase scientific knowledge and understanding of the interaction of electromagnetic fields and ionized gases with biological cells and to apply this knowledge to the development of medical diagnostics, therapeutics, and environmental decontamination. The objectives of the Center are to perform leading edge interdisciplinary and multi-institutional research, recruit top faculty and exceptional graduate students, support regional, national and international programs, and to increase external funding and institutional visibility.

 

Smart Patients and OncoSec Medical

Smart Patients is an online platform that connects cancer patients and caregivers, allowing for an exchange of knowledge and support. Co-founded by Gilles Frydman and Roni Zeiger, MD – Google’s former chief health strategist – Smart Patients is a platform where users can share stories about their personal experiences, talk about the current leading research in the field, as well as access a library of clinical trials. By combining a message board community and archive of clinical trials, cancer affected patients, friends and family have an invaluable resource in their own home.

Blossom Ball 2013 and OncoSec Medical

As a CEO, there are many different ways to cause or affect change. Being a corporate influencer puts you not only at the forefront of your company’s decision-making process but also in talks with many other CEOs and industry professionals. With this power also comes the chance for positive social partnerships that can benefit individuals, communities, societies and even the world. CEOs Against Cancer aims to do just that; bringing together CEOs from across the world, in order to help save lives, through cancer prevention and research. This Saturday, May 11th, members of CEO’s Against Cancer will be attending the annual Blossom Ball, to raise funds for the American Cancer Society.


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