Vienna-based biotech company APEIRON Biologics AG (Apeiron) today announced the establishment of a subsidiary that will globally commercialize the peptide analytics service RAS-FingerprintTM which has been developed by Apeiron and already marketed successfully. Attoquant Diagnostics GmbH (Attoquant) has been founded specifically for that purpose and will also be responsible for further development of the technology platform as well as the extension of the product range.
Attoquant offers a globally unique technology to measure and quantify all peptides of the renin angiotensin system (RAS) from blood and various tissues with extraordinary sensitivity. These peptides play a key role e.g. for the regulation of blood pressure, water balance as well as acute and chronic inflammation. The simultaneous and precise analytical assessment of the entirety of these peptides is worldwide unique and was termed RAS-FingerprintTM. This novel technology may be used for a more targeted application of drugs that lower high blood pressure or to newly develop such medications by rational design. Moreover, the RAS-FingerprintTM allows for a better understanding of prevention and treatment of cardiovascular and renal diseases and has great potential as a diagnostic and therapeutic biomarker in general. Attoquant is also working on extensions of the methodology and is offering client-specific analytics.
Hans Loibner, PhD, CEO of Apeiron: "We are very pleased to provide to a young and entrepreneurial team the opportunity to start up another outstanding biotech company in Austria, based on a promising new technology. This technology was developed as part of pharmacologic assays within the project APN01 that was successfully out-licensed to GlaxoSmithKline in 2010. It has manifold possible applications in preclinical and particularly in clinical R&D."
Marko Poglitsch, CEO of Attoquant: "After the first successfully established customer relations, Attoquant is glad to give valuable input into the further development of diagnostics and therapy of various cardiovascular diseases. While we presumed that our technology will be a useful tool in particular for drug development and personalized medicine, we were surprised by the extent of positive feedback from the scientific community. Now, our mission is to make the RAS-FingerprintTM broadly available for basic research and clinical studies and to further develop it for its use in routine diagnostics. In view of these tasks, we have very exciting months and years ahead."
About Apeiron (as of December 2012):
Apeiron is a mostly privately financed biotech company in Vienna that develops immunological/biological therapies against cancer. Its portfolio consists of five clinical projects (lead in phase III) as well as some preclinical approaches. The most advanced project APN311 is an antibody to treat the pediatric cancer neuroblastoma. The immunocytokine hu14.18-IL2 (APN301) is being developed clinically in neuroblastoma as well as in melanoma. Moreover, recombinant human superoxide dismutase is in clinical development, notably in a topical liposomal formulation (APN201) as a potent anti-inflammatory tissue-protective biologic. Two complementary approaches are pursued (APN401, APN411) that stimulate immune cells in a novel way to treat cancer more effectively. The recombinant human Angiotensin Converting Enzyme 2 (GSK2586881, previously APN01) was licensed out to GlaxoSmithKline in early 2010 and is currently investigated in a phase II trial in patients suffering from acute lung injury. Apeiron started operations in 2006 and has 23 employees as of today.
About Attoquant (as of December 2012):
Attoquant Diagnostics GmbH is a provider of analytical services and based in Vienna. It offers the highly sensitive quantification of peptides in blood or tissues via its newly developed technology based on LC-MS/MS (liquid chromatography / mass spectroscopy). Even in minimal amounts, these peptides carry important physiological roles. The current focus lies on the peptide hormones of the renin angiotensin system. Attoquant is a subsidiary of APEIRON Biologics AG and currently has five employees.
About the RAS-FingerprintTM (as of December 2012):
The RAS-FingerprintTM is the name of a technology for simultaneous quantification of up to ten peptide hormones of the renin angiotensin system (plus other peptides). Thus, a precise "fingerprint" of this hormone system is created that is both patient- and therapy-specific. Developed over the last few years, this proprietary technology is based on a special method of sample preparation for the subsequent analysis by mass spectroscopy and has a sensitivity and comprehensiveness that is globally unique.