announced today that microRNA expert Dr. Muneesh Tewari has joined the Scientific
Advisory Board of CombiMatrix. Dr. Tewari is in the Human Biology division at
the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center.
"I am delighted to have Dr. Tewari on our Scientific Advisory Board,"
said Dr. Amit Kumar, President and Chief Executive Officer of CombiMatrix. "Last
week, I discussed CombiMatrix's project and plans for the Comprehensive Cancer
Array(tm) -- an array-enabled test, using a blood sample to screen for multiple
types of cancer based on microRNA markers. Dr. Tewari is an expert in the fields
of cancer and microRNAs and, we feel, the world's leading researcher specifically
on the topic of cancer-related, blood-borne microRNAs. We are excited about
him joining our SAB, and we are excited about the Comprehensive Cancer Array
project. We feel that there is a potential $12 billion per year market for such
a non-invasive test, given as part of regular physical exams, much like the
PSA test is today." More information about this revolutionary new product
can be found in a webcast that may be accessed on CombiMatrix's website, www.combimatrix.com,
in the Investor/Events section (http://investor.combimatrix.com/events.cfm).
"Early detection, at a stage when cancer is curable by surgery, could
dramatically reduce mortality caused by most common cancers. An ideal solution
would be detection by a simple blood test. MicroRNAs are well-known to be dysregulated
in cancer and could form the basis for such a test, but until recently, detecting
tumor-derived microRNAs required an invasive sampling of cancer tissue. Showing
that tumor-derived microRNAs circulate in a stable form in the blood and that
they are present in differing amounts between -healthy individuals and cancer
patients was the subject of my and my colleagues' work published in the July
28th issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Successful
development of such blood-based detection could have a revolutionary impact
upon detection and outcomes of cancer, and I am pleased that CombiMatrix is
working in this direction." Some public information about Dr. Tewari's
work can be found at the following link: http://www.sciencentral.com/video/2008/07/28/cancer-blood-tests/.
Dr. Tewari earned both an M.D. and a Ph.D. from the University of Michigan.
Following his internship and residency at the University of Michigan Medical
Center, he went on to train as a clinical and research fellow at Dana-Farber
Cancer Institute in Boston. He subsequently joined the faculty at Harvard Medical
School as an Instructor and served in various clinical capacities including
Staff Physician at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Affiliate Physician at
Massachusetts General Hospital, and Associate Physician at Brigham and Women's
Hospital (all affiliates of Harvard Medical School). He currently has a laboratory
at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, where his group pursues basic
and translational studies of microRNAs in cancer.