The investment – terms of which have not been disclosed – was conducted through the Japanese drugmaker’s Takeda Ventures venture capital arm and reflects the potential of Presage’s approach according to CEO Graeme Martin.
“Presage’s CIVO technology holds promise to better translate preclinical discoveries to patients, particularly in the field of novel cancer drug combinations.”
According to Presage, the CIVO platform is designed to help sponsors better predict patient response – and likely efficacy - in late phase clinical trials based on data generated during preclinical or first-in-human studies.
The platform consists of an arrayed microinjection system that enables simultaneous delivery of micro-doses of candidate drugs at defined positions on a tumour. It employs automated image analysis to evaluate tumour response.
In April this year Seattle-based Presage announced, in collaboration with partner Celgene, that response to drugs delivered using the CIVO system accurately predicts systemic response.
Tokyo-headquartered Takeda has worked with Presage since 2012 when its subsidiary – Millennium Pharmaceuticals – signed a cancer research agreement also focused on assessing the CIVO system.
Under that deal the firms have been evaluating hundreds of different combinations of drugs and preclinical models to guide clinical decision-making on Takeda’s pipeline agents.