Onconova adopts single-cell DNA analysis platform

By Vassia Barba contact

- Last updated on GMT

(Image: Getty/wildpixel)
(Image: Getty/wildpixel)

Related tags: Onconova Therapeutics, Mission Bio, Cancer cells, Cancer, Cell therapy

Onconova to use Mission Bio’s Tapestri targeted single-cell DNA analysis platform to advance its cancer therapy, rigosertib, into Phase III clinical trials.

Pennsylvania, US-headquartered Onconova Therapeutics, a biopharmaceutical focusing on treatments for myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS), announced a partnership with Mission Bio, the developer of Tapestri genomics platform based in San Francisco, US.

Rigosertib is a small molecule targeting the Ras protein, which appears mutated in over 30% of patients with cancer. The Tapestri single-cell genomics platform will be used by Onconova to study single cell clones in MDS and determine the sequence of genetic events and the influence of rigosertib on them.

“[The platform] is expected to help identify mutations and cancer subclones with better resolution than that of traditional sequencing methods,”​ Darrin Crisitello, CCO of Mission Bio, said in a statement.

Crisitello told Outsourcing-Pharma that Tapestri uses droplet microfluidic technology to identify the cancer subclones by genotyping every cell to determine each one’s molecular profile.

More specifically, the platform encapsulates single cells into tens of thousands of droplets and uniquely ‘barcodes’ each individual cell's DNA for accurate co-mutation detection.

“This allows much deeper insights into each cell identifying various sub-clones of the patient sample, which are often not able to be seen via traditional sequencing,” ​Crisitello told us.

Steve Fruchtman, CEO of Onconova, said that rigosertib has the potential to be the first higher-risk MDS treatment for thousands of patients in the US.

Onconova aims to begin the Phase III clinical trials of rigosertib in higher-risk MDS patients who fail the current standard of care by the end of the year while, according to Crisitello, a regulatory approval is anticipated in 2021.

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