a new modality for the treatment of cancer
Our research goals are: 1. to develop a companion diagnostic/theranostic test that identifies patients most likely to achieve a single shot cure, 2. to develop new and more powerful oncolytic viruses and oncolytic vaccines for specific cancer indications, and 3. to maximize the impact of oncolytic viruses as a cornerstone of oncolytic immunotherapy by combining them with checkpoint inhibitors, adoptive cellular therapies and immune adjuvants
A Vibrant Pipeline
Our research interests center on demonstrating the value of oncolytic virotherapy as a new modality for the treatment of cancer. Research activities are conducted as sponsored research through academic collaborations or as contract research through a highly skilled team of scientists at Imanis Life Sciences LLC. Viruses from several families are engineered in our program, and are tested in combination with various immune modulating drugs.
A unique characteristic of Vyriads viruses is that they are engineered to permit noninvasive monitoring of virus spread in treated animals and patients. This is achieved using secretable marker peptides like carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA), or with the thyroidal sodium iodide symporter (NIS) which concentrates radioactive iodine into virus-infected tissues, usable not just for noninvasive imaging, but also to enhance tumor killing.
Oncolytic Vaccine Development
While our viruses are capable of stimulating antitumor immunity, we are continuously seeking to enhance this property. One approach to this is through the creation of “oncolytic vaccines” in which the virus contains a gene that encodes a known tumor antigen and can thereby more efficiently harness the anticancer immune response. Several tumor antigens are currently being evaluated in this regard.