Curetis N.V. (the "Company" and, together with its subsidiaries, "Curetis"), a developer of next-level molecular diagnostic solutions, today announced that its wholly-owned subsidiary Ares Genetics GmbH received funding from the Vienna Business Agency (Vienna, Austria) for the development of a prototype solution for the rapid, Next-Generation Sequencing-based diagnosis of pathogens and associated antibiotic resistances for patients suffering from severe infections. The total volume of the 2.5-year TRIPLE-A (Assay Development and Artificial Intelligence to Diagnose Antibiotic Resistant Infections) development project amounts to EUR 1.3 million. Vienna Business Agency is already supporting the ARES&CO Pharma Partnering Program of Ares Genetics, under which the Company recently partnered with Sandoz for the development of a digital anti-infectives platform.
Microbial infections and antibiotic resistances have become a major healthcare challenge, with antimicrobial resistance estimated to have caused 700,000 deaths globally in 2016, a number that is projected to dramatically increase to 10 million deaths annually by 2050 if no countermeasures are taken. Ares Genetics seeks to address this challenge with a disruptive approach based on high-resolution Next Generation Sequencing (“NGS”) technology in combination with a proprietary, artificial intelligence (“AI”) curated genetic pathogen and antibiotic resistance (“AMR”) reference database, ARESdb, for result interpretation. To this end, the Company in September 2018 has initiated the development of the ARESupa Universal Pathogenome Assay, a single diagnostic test designed to detect any pathogen and associated drug resistances from any native patient sample.
As engineering and in-silico assay design further advanced since September 2018, the TRIPLE-A project funded by the Vienna Business Agency now aims to develop a laboratory prototype of ARESupa. Therefore, Ares Genetics is currently setting up ARESlab, a dedicated R&D and diagnostic service laboratory in Vienna, Austria, for in-house test development and initial commercialization in Europe.
“We are combining NGS technology and advanced data analytics based on our ARESdb database, which already today allows for quantitative molecular prediction of antibiotic resistance with up to more than 98% accuracy,” said Dr. Andreas Posch, Managing Director & CEO of Ares Genetics. “With ARESdb effectively linking genetic biomarkers to antibiotic resistance and the further advancement of NGS technology, we believe that our approach is well suited as a next generation diagnostic solution to tackle microbial infections and AMR as one of the biggest healthcare threats of the 21st century. We are also progressing in our effort to attract U.S. venture capital funding to further accelerate the development of ARESupa and its commercial deployment in the U.S. market.”
“The project is supporting our strategy of capitalizing on the know-how and the comprehensive patent portfolio of Ares Genetics and the entire Curetis group for NGS-based infectious disease diagnostics,” said Dr. Achim Plum, Chief Business Officer of Curetis and Managing Director of Ares Genetics. “On the heels of the strategic collaboration agreement with Sandoz to develop a digital anti-infectives platform, we also recently initiated a technology evaluation project for ARESdb with a global diagnostics player. Both projects reflect the increasing recognition of the unique assets and capabilities of Ares Genetics and are part of our efforts to monetize them in strategic partnerships.”
About Curetis and Ares Genetics
Curetis N.V.’s (Euronext: CURE) goal is to become a leading provider of innovative solutions for molecular microbiology diagnostics designed to address the global challenge of diagnosing severe infectious diseases and identifying antibiotic resistances in hospitalized patients.
Curetis’ Unyvero System is a versatile, fast and highly automated molecular diagnostic platform for easy-to-use, cartridge-based solutions for the comprehensive and rapid detection of pathogens and antimicrobial resistance markers in a range of severe infectious disease indications. Results are available within hours, a process that can take days or even weeks if performed with standard diagnostic procedures, and thereby facilitates improved patient outcomes, stringent antibiotic stewardship and health economic benefits. Unyvero in vitro diagnostic (IVD) products are marketed in Europe, the Middle East, Asia and the U.S.
Curetis’ wholly owned subsidiary Ares Genetics GmbH offers next-generation solutions for infectious disease diagnostics and therapeutics. The ARES Technology Platform combines the world’s most comprehensive database on the genetics of antimicrobial resistances, ARESdb, with advanced bioinformatics and artificial intelligence.