VisionGate and University of Colorado Join Forces to Prevent Lung Cancer

VisionGate and University of Colorado Join Forces to Prevent Lung Cancer
Phoenix-based VisionGate Inc. has acquired exclusive rights to a patent owned by the University of Colorado to use the drug Iloprost for the prevention of lung cancer, an evolution that takes VisionGate from purely diagnostics to a diagnostic and therapeutics company.

Combining VisionGate’s LuCED non-invasive diagnostic test for early-stage lung cancer detection, with UC’s drug Iloprost has the potential to make great changes in lung cancer therapy with early detection and prevention of the disease, researchers said.

LuCED has shown high sensitivity (92 percent) and specificity (98 percent) for lung cancer detection in previous studies, and it has demonstrated the ability to detect different tumor stages and even precancerous cells (dysplasia).

Researchers at UC’s Anschutz Medical Campus successfully completed a Phase 2 trial with Iloprost, a drug approved for the treatment of several lung diseases — including pulmonary arterial hypertension — where the drug showed a 20 percent reduction of overall dysplasia in former smokers. The ability to reverse this precancerous condition has the potential to prevent cancer.

The partnership will continue the work as part of the University of Colorado Cancer Center’s Lung Cancer SPORE, a program funded by the National Cancer Institute through 2019 to fast-track research findings to help cancer patients and those at risk.

Future steps include a Phase 2b validation trial, comparing LuCED with biopsy, followed by the Phase 3 trial for Iloprost with LuCED as the diagnostic tool for identifying patients with dysplasia. Researchers are confident this combination can be game-changing.

“We are ushering in a new era that boldly attempts to eradicate lung cancer, the world’s No. 1 cancer killer,” said VisionGate Chairman and CEO Alan Nelson in a press release. “For years, VisionGate has focused on the early detection of lung cancer where we have become the technology leader in non-invasive cell-based early detection. For the first time, we can now detect the pre-cancer condition and provide a chemoprevention therapy to reverse it. Now more than ever, we are determined to make a lasting worldwide impact on this deadly disease.”

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