SAN DIEGO, CA--(Marketwire - Mar 6, 2013) - Lpath, Inc. (NASDAQ: LPTN), the industry leader in bioactive lipid-targeted therapeutics, has signed a collaboration and license agreement to develop cancer diagnostics with Provista Diagnostics, Inc. a leader in molecular cancer diagnostics and a CLIA-accredited reference laboratory.
The collaboration will focus on the bioactive lipid lysophosphatidic acid (LPA), with the agreement granting Provista an exclusive license to Lpath's murine LPA antibodies for use in clinical laboratory applications involving the diagnoses of cancer.
Provista will initially conduct a prospective pilot study in ovarian cancer patients and Lpath will measure levels of LPA from patient plasma. Based on the results, additional studies may be conducted in ovarian and other cancers. Lpath will receive an upfront payment, research funding and development milestone payments, as well as royalties on diagnostic-product revenue.
The American Cancer Society estimates more than 22,000 new cases of ovarian cancer will be diagnosed in the United States this year, leading to 14,000 deaths. While other cancers have shown a reduction in mortality due to early detection tests and improved treatments, this has not been so with ovarian cancer, the deadliest of all gynecologic cancers.
"While our ImmuneY2™ technology platform is known for generating therapeutic antibodies against disease, it also has potential utility in diagnostic settings," said Lpath President and CEO Scott Pancoast. "So by collaborating with Provista, a leader in molecular cancer diagnostics settings, we believe we can develop tests that provide early detection of ovarian cancer and that improve treatment outcomes. This agreement also underscores the significant value and capabilities of ImmuneY2 and further reinforces the importance of bioactive lipids as disease-relevant molecules."
Dr. David Reese, CEO of Provista, commented: "Provista is committed to advancing the standard of diagnostic care for women at risk or suffering from ovarian and other cancers, and LPA is a potential biomarker that could be critical to achieving this goal. We believe the ability to detect bioactive lipids using Lpath's unique technology will provide a distinct advantage in diagnosing gynecologic cancers."
About Provista Diagnostics
Provista Diagnostics, Inc., develops and commercializes breakthrough, easy-to-administer blood-based diagnostic tests for early oncology-related disease state recognition and detection purposes. The company's focus is on oncology-related diagnostics where a significantly high unmet clinical need exists. Near-term development and commercialization efforts focus on women's cancers such as breast and ovarian cancer. For more about Provista is available at www.provistadx.com.
San Diego-based Lpath, Inc., a therapeutic antibody company, is the category leader in lipid-targeted therapeutics. The company's ImmuneY2™ drug-discovery engine has the unique ability to generate monoclonal antibodies that bind to and inhibit bioactive lipids that contribute to disease. The company is developing three drug candidates: iSONEP™ is being studied in a Phase 2 trial in wet AMD patients; ASONEP™ is being studied in a Phase 2 trial in renal cell carcinoma patients; and Lpathomab is a preclinical drug candidate that holds promise in pain, neurotrauma, and other diseases. For more information, visit www.Lpath.com.