Frost + Sullivan today
announced that the 2008 European Technology Innovation of the Year Award in
molecular/cellular imaging has been bestowed upon Aposense Ltd., for its pioneering
molecular platform for the targeting and imaging of apoptosis.
Israeli-based Aposense's technology platform, known as Aposense(R), is an
innovative set of rationally designed molecules specifically targeting apoptosis
(programmed cell death), both for medical imaging, personalised medicine, and
for targeted drug design.
"The modular structure of Aposense(R) molecules allows a broad range of
imaging moieties for clinical imaging to be attached and targeted to apoptotic
cells," notes Frost & Sullivan Research Analyst Katherine Austin. "Drugs
can also be targeted to apoptotic cells and tissues with Aposense(R). This important
characteristic makes Aposense(R) technology applicable to various imaging modalities
and targeted therapeutics."
The Aposense(R) lead-compound for molecular imaging, ML-10, enables real-time
visualisation of biological activity in the clinic using a standard positron
emission tomography (PET) scanner following radio-labeling of the ML-10 agent
with the isotope 18-F, which is used for most other PET procedures. It can be
used in the diagnosis of disease as well as disease staging, and also for monitoring
response to therapy. It can also be integrated as a valuable tool in the drug
"In the field of oncology, Aposense(R) ML-10 allows clinicians to see
response of tumors to anti-cancer treatment within hours or days, compared with
the use of current technologies such as computerised tomography or magnetic
resonance imaging, which require weeks or months before the therapeutic effects
can be visualised," says Austin. "Standard imaging technologies reveal
treatment effects only at the anatomical level, while with Aposense(R), the
biological effect can be seen much earlier at the cellular level."
Aposense's imaging technology can thus provide real-time answers to important
qualitative and quantitative questions, while allowing physicians to make better
use of their therapeutic arsenal. Aposense(R) technology could also play an
important role in bio-guided radiotherapy, where Aposense will enable adjusting
the radiation field and dose to optimise its effectiveness.
"Some additional significant advantages of Aposense's technology for medical
imaging are its long shelf life and in vivo stability, its low required dose,
and its rapid clearance from non-target tissues through the urine," adds
Austin. "Moreover, the technology is clinically-compatible, and its implementation
does not require any changes in current standard medical imaging equipment or
While there are a few other probes for cell death in vitro in cell culture,
Aposense(R) ML-10 is the only agent currently available for the clinical detection
of 'cell death in the living body'. Limitations of other investigated probes
include toxicity, chemical reactivity, and immunogenicity. Furthermore, these
probes have problems of bio-distribution and rapid metabolism and degradation
in vivo, which consequently lead to low signal/background ratios.
"Low-molecular weight compounds are advantageous over large protein products
on the market in many aspects, such as immunogenicity, metabolism, radiolabeling
or bio-distribution," comments Austin. "Therefore, Aposense has utilized
a nanotechnology approach in designing a molecule with minimised structure,
which maintains biological performance in the detection of apoptotic cells;
the company's lead product for molecular imaging, the Aposense (18F)- ML-10
for PET imaging, has a molecular weight of only 206."
Frost & Sullivan's Technology Innovation Award is bestowed upon a company
(or individual) that has carried out new research, which has resulted in innovation(s)
that have or are expected to bring significant contributions to the industry
in terms of adoption, change, and competitive posture. This award recognises
the quality and depth of a company's research and development program as well
as the vision and risk-taking that enabled it to undertake such an endeavour.
Frost & Sullivan Best Practices Awards recognise companies in a variety
of regional and global markets for demonstrating outstanding achievement and
superior performance in areas such as leadership, technological innovation,
customer service, and strategic product development. Industry analysts compare
market participants and measure performance through in-depth interviews, analysis,
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