Personalised cancer therapy on the horizon thanks to new genomic cancer research partnership


Gene Editing Institute at Christiana Care Health System partners with NovellusDx in BIRD Foundation grant

Cancer cells

Cancer cells

The Gene Editing Institute (of the Helen F. Graham Cancer Center and Research Institute, Christiana Care Health System) has been awarded a grant of $900,000.

The grant allows the Gene Editing Institute to partner with Jerusalem-based NovellusDx on a new series of gene editing technologies that help identify the genetic mechanism responsible for both the onset and progression of many types of cancer.

NovellusDx has established an approach to identify unknown “driver” gene mutations that often accelerate or facilitate cancer progression.

With clinical partners throughout the world, NovellusDx obtains DNA sequence information and creates a personal profile of the genetic mutations from individual patients.

The Gene Editing Institute will use its expertise in gene editing to re-create these mutations that allows identification, design and implementation of the most effective therapy for each patient. Cancer genomics plays a critical role in pharmacogenomics, the study of how genes impact a patient’s response to drugs.

“With our joint research, we hope to develop gene editing technologies that help develop effective, safe medications and doses that can be tailored to a person’s genetic profile,” said Eric Kmiec, director of the Gene Editing Institute.

“This will lead to precision and personalised cancer therapy at its very best.”

Haim Gil-Ad, CEO of NovellusDx said: “ This work has the potential to change the way functional genomics is done. Once the genetic makeup is known, we will be immediately able to test and monitor the effect of the patient mutations in live cells.”

The grant came from the US-Israel Binational Industrial Research and Development (BIRD) Foundation, in partnership with the biotechnology company NovellusDx.

The BIRD Foundation promotes collaboration between US and Israeli companies in a wide range of technology fields for the purpose of joint product development.

Projects submitted to the BIRD Foundation undergo evaluation by the US National Institute of Standards and Technology of the US Department of Commerce and by the Israel Innovation Authority.

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