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Entelos signs contract with FNIH for biomarker consortium
SAN MATEO, Calif.—Entelos, an in-silico modeling company that provides simulation products and consulting services, has announced the inking of a contract with the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health (FNIH) for services to be rendered in conjunction with the Biomarkers Consortium Atherosclerosis Project, aiming to study biomarker prioritization in Entelos' Cardiovascular PhysioLab platform.
The Consortium consists of a broad range of stakeholders in the fields of medical, pharmaceutical and food sciences, with participants in both academia and the private sector. The project is expected to last approximately two years and result in new knowledge and advanced computerized models and tools.
"This remarkable consortium of stakeholders has taken on the challenge of determining which of the many proposed biomarkers have the most direct mechanistic links to cardiovascular health," Shawn O'Connor, president and CEO of Entelos, said in a press release. "In doing so, they have asked Entelos to address these questions by performing simulations in our Cardiovascular PhysioLab platform. Our platforms reproduce underlying disease mechanisms and identify how biomarkers change in response to both disease progression and to therapeutic interventions. Importantly, we evaluate this change in a huge virtual population – guaranteeing that we are taking individual patient variability into account."
Several industry corporations will be taking part in the consortium, including the National Institutes of Health and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Among the private sector, additional participants include Amylin Pharmaceuticals, Eli Lilly and Co., Pfizer Inc., Takeda Global Research & Development Center, Inc. and the Dairy Research Institute, and Quintiles will provide additional support. Members from academia will also be participating, including Harvard University, Oakland Children's Hospital Research Institute and Partners Healthcare, with additional collaborators expected to join the undertaking in the future.
PubMed Health, of the U.S. National Library of Medicine defines atherosclerosis (also known as arteriosclerosis) as hardening of the arteries. When cholesterol and fats build up in arteries, they form plaques that can block arteries, limiting blood flow and causing heart attacks or strokes.
"Most of these biomarkers have been studied one at a time, and only measure a specific aspect of atherosclerosis," Dr. David Fryburg, a consultant and former pharmaceutical company executive leading the atherosclerosis consortium, said in a statement. "Integrating these into a comprehensive computer-based disease model will allow us to identify those short-term measures which best predict long-term clinical outcomes like heart attack and stroke. Successful development of this model can facilitate more confident testing of new therapies for atherosclerosis and prevention of cardiovascular disease."
So far, more than 100 biomarkers have been studied in patients with cardiovascular disease, biomarkers designed to measure improvement or degradation of a patient's condition and how quickly it is changing. Additional tests will allow researchers and pharmaceutical companies to determine which therapies are proving beneficial, and by how much, in clinical trials. The biomarkers have not been measured in multiple studies, however, or examined systematically across a range of different patients. the consortium will seek to identify the biomarkers that prove most accurate and informative in terms of identifying cardiovascular risk.
Entelos' PhysioLab platform is a predictive biosimulation technology, and the company can design and calibrate platforms to answer a range of research questions through in- silico modeling.