Biomica Initiates Microbiome Based Immuno-Oncology Studies

April 17, 2019

Biomica, an emerging biopharmaceutical company developing innovative microbiome-based therapeutics, and a subsidiary of Evogene Ltd. (NASDAQ:  EVGN) (TASE: EVGN), announced on 4/17/19 the initiation of pre-clinical studies for BMC-121 & BMC-127, two rationally-designed microbial consortia, in its therapeutic immuno-oncology program. The program aims to improve current cancer therapies by modulating patients' response to immune checkpoint blockade across various cancer types through alterations of the patients' gut microbiome.

Biomica leverages Evogene's computational predictive biology (CPB) platform and related technologies to analyze functional elements of the gut microbiome in high-resolution. Applying these analyses to relevant data of patients with Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer (NSCLC) and Renal Cell Carcinoma (RCC), Biomica identified key microbial functions related to the response to immune-checkpoint inhibitors. Through this, Biomica gained mechanistic understanding of the relationships of specific microbes with various human cellular processes believed to play pivotal roles in cancer and immune function. Biomica's unique approach focusing on the functional capabilities of the microbiome has resulted in the identification and development of two rationally-designed consortia, BMC-121 & BMC-127. Biomica's first drug candidates are designed to add a selective set of missing microbial functions in order to improve patients' response to immunotherapy.

Prof. Yehuda Ringel, Biomica CSO, stated: "This entry into pre-clinical studies is an important milestone in the life of Biomica, a company formed less than two years ago. With our strong database and Evogene's unique computational capabilities we are now turning our computational predictions to actual pre-clinical studies, and we believe BMC121 and BMC127 will be the beginning of a broad and promising microbiome-based therapeutics pipeline."

Developed as Live Bacterial Products (LBPs), BMC-121 & BMC-127 are rationally-designed LBP consortia comprised of unique microbes that harbor specific functional capabilities with the potential to enhance immunologic therapeutic responses and facilitate anti-tumor immune activity though multiple biological processes.Rationally-designed consortia are multi-strain products designed to restore diversity and specific functionality to a microbial community with individually selected, cultured bacteria.

The company is also developing therapies targeting drug resistant bacteria and GI disorders.

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