Immunology

Biomedical/pharma, Clinical care, Immunology, Personal/public health

Gluten-free dietary products contain more sugar and fats but fewer nutrients and are generally more expensive. A gluten-free diet can even lead to social isolation and stigmatization. Scientists are thus looking for a way that allows people with celiac gluten intolerance disease to enjoy the benefits of gluten in a safe manner.
Muna Therapeutics is developing transformative therapies for neurodegenerative diseases. These drugs aim to preserve cognition and enhance the brain’s resilience in diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, providing much-needed hope for millions of patients and their loved ones.
Agomab Therapeutics NV (‘Agomab’) today announced the closing of a $100 million (€94.9 million) Series C financing round led by Fidelity Management & Research Company, with participation from new investors EQT Life Sciences (EQT), Canaan, Dawn Biopharma, a platform controlled by KKR, and existing investors.
Coave Therapeutics is a French biotech developing gene therapies for neurodegenerative and ocular diseases. The company has developed a technology platform that can be used to redecorate the outer surface of viruses, creating gene therapy vectors that are better at accurately delivering healthy genes to the right target cells, including neurons in the deep brain tissue. By combining this vector technology with transgenes restoring natural cell cleaning pathways, the company has created a pipeline of therapies for both genetically and non-genetically defined neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson’s Disease, Multiple System Atrophy (MSA), and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS).
The COVID-19 pandemic has brought vaccines back into the drug development spotlight, and mRNA vaccines are stealing the show with sales of USD 54.4 billion in 2021 alone. Few know that the developers of the mRNA COVID-19 vaccines actually drew upon years of experience attempting to develop cancer vaccines. This approach goes back several decades, and although the field has to date seen limited success, it has nevertheless witnessed a renewed interests in recent years. We examine the latest trends in cancer vaccine development, and where the opportunities lie for the future of the industry.
The young Belgian start-up Persomed is unique – it was founded in 2020 by four partners each with relevant expertise in the personalized immunotherapy field: myNEO, QbD Group, Antleron, and the VUB. Together, the multidisciplinary strength and expertise has resulted in the development of Persomed’s cutting-edge technology platform for personalized cancer treatments. The organization is now at crucial point, raising funds to initiate a clinical trial phase I in a first, urgent-medical-need indication: metastatic colorectal cancer.
Belgian start-up Dualyx is developing a novel approach with the potential to treat a wide range of autoimmune disorders. The method uses llama-derived antibodies to flip a master switch and create regulatory T cells, which help restore order to overzealous immune systems.
Abscint is one of several Belgian biotech companies using single-domain antibodies. But unlike the others, Abscint is using these antibodies for diagnostic purposes instead of therapeutic ones. After being labelled with a miniscule amount of radioactive material, the antibodies can be used to show on PET/CT scans for example whether breast cancer cells have spread to the brain, or if patients with sarcoidosis are at risk of a sudden cardiac arrest. The company, founded in 2020, is currently looking for funding to bring its solutions to the market as soon as possible.
Long COVID is a less talked-about aspect of the COVID-19 pandemic, yet its impact on society is already profound. Although this problem is still largely flying under the radar of the life sciences industry, a couple of first movers have already initiated clinical programs to address the condition. If more companies move into this space, long COVID may prove a catalyst for R&D in other related and underserved indications, like chronic fatigue syndrome.
Long COVID is a less talked-about aspect of the COVID-19 pandemic, yet its impact on society is already profound. Although this problem is still largely flying under the radar of the life sciences industry, a couple of first movers have already initiated clinical programs to address the condition. If more companies move into this space, long COVID may prove a catalyst for R&D in other related and underserved indications, like chronic fatigue syndrome.