(Page 2 of 2)
the type of circulating tumors cells in their system. Once treatment begins, the technology also can be used to monitor how well a particular regimen is working.
“We are receiving clinical trial samples from around the world, and returning results in 72 hours,” Prahalad says.
The company eventually plans to seek regulatory approval for its diagnostic technology in the United States and European Union, Prahalad says. “The work before us now is really focused on automating the technology and taking our system through the regulatory process,” he told me by phone yesterday.
Establishing partnerships with big pharmaceutical companies is central to the company’s strategy. “At the beginning of 2013, we had six pharmaceutical partners,” Prahalad said. “We ended the year with 14,” and many more additional deals are in the works. All of them are paying partnerships, Prahalad says.
Epic has not had to raise additional venture capital funding since late 2012, when the company raised $13 million in a Series B funding round that included Domain Associates, Roche Venture Fund, and Pfizer Venture Investments. Since then, the company has grown from 25 to 40 employees.
So far, Epic has completed eight oncology clinical studies, and is involved in another 27 clinical trials around the world .
In a separate statement today, Epic Sciences says it plans to present six abstracts about its technology platform at the American Society of Clinical Oncology Genitourinary conference, which begins later this week in San Francisco. Epic says the studies were done in collaboration with its academic and pharmaceutical partners, including Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York, Institute of Cancer Research in London, Weill Cornell Medical College in New York, the University of Michigan, and Tarrytown, NY-based Progenics Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: PGNX).
“The questions addressed in these studies with our collaborators represent critical technical and clinical questions associated with the robustness of future oncology diagnostic solutions utilizing real-time liquid biopsies,” Prahalad says in the statement. “Epic’s technology has an industry-leading level of sensitivity in detecting circulating tumor cells and the added benefit of enhanced molecular characterization of CTCs to develop crucial tools for better cancer management.”