LexaGene Places its First Beta Prototype into Massachusetts Veterinary Referral Hospital

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Source: LexaGene Holdings Inc

BEVERLY, Mass., June 05, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — LexaGene Holdings, Inc., (OTCQB: LXXGFTSX-V: LXG) (the “Company”), a biotechnology company that develops genetic analyzers for rapid pathogen detection and other molecular markers, announced today that it has placed its first beta prototype into Massachusetts Veterinary Referral Hospital (Mass Vet) in Woburn, MA.  Mass Vet is one of 24 hospitals owned and operated by Ethos Veterinary Health.

“This placement marks a very significant milestone for the Company and for the diagnostics industry.  We have generated a long list of interested users who want to test our technology.  From this list, we selected Mass Vet to be our first site due to their reputation for being pioneers and thought leaders in veterinary medicine.  The doctors at Mass Vet are eager to test our cutting-edge technology to provide the best possible treatment for their patients,” said Dr. Jack Regan, CEO and Founder of LexaGene. “Following the placement at Mass Vet, we will continue placing our devices at various other sites throughout the United States as part of our ongoing beta test program. This will enable potential customers to experience the technology in their own facility so that they can compare LX-generated results to their standard testing methods. We are confident these users will quickly appreciate the benefits of our technology and this will help seed future sales.”

The beta LX prototype is expected to identify the presence of bacteria in the overwhelming majority of urinary tract infections.  In addition, the beta prototype will simultaneously screen samples for common antibiotic resistance factors providing veterinarians the information they need to select the best treatment for their patients.

“Emergency and critical care veterinarians are eagerly awaiting the commercialization of an accurate instrument that can identify the cause of an infection and whether any antibiotic resistance factors are detected.  We are very excited to have the opportunity to first test LexaGene’s technology.  It is amazing that their instrument returns results so quickly, as we are used to waiting 3 days to get results back.  Shortening the turn-around time for quality results will lead to much better patient care,” said Dr. Chand Khanna DVM, PhD, DACVIM (Onc), DACVP (Hon), Chief Science Officer of Ethos Veterinary Health and President of Ethos Discovery.

A video interview with Dr. Jack Regan regarding this news can be viewed here.

We are pleased to announce that LexaGene will host a webinar tomorrow, Thursday, June 6th at 11 AM EST to provide an overview of the Company.  The webinar signup can be accessed at this link.

To be added to the LexaGene email distribution list, please subscribe on the Company website.

 


About LexaGene Holdings Inc.
LexaGene is a biotechnology company that develops genetic analyzers for pathogen detection and other molecular markers for on-site rapid testing in veterinary diagnostics, food safety and for use in open-access markets such as clinical research, agricultural testing and biodefense. End-users simply need to collect a sample, load it onto the instrument with a sample preparation cartridge, and press ‘go’. The LX Analyzer delivers excellent sensitivity, specificity, and breadth of detection and can process multiple samples at a time, in an on-demand fashion, returning results in about 1 hour. The unique open-access feature is designed for custom testing so that end-users can load their own real-time PCR assays onto the instrument to target any genetic target of interest.

About Ethos Veterinary Health
Ethos Veterinary Health is a veterinary health company with hospitals across the U.S. providing advanced medical care for pets. Our approach includes a focus on transformative science, continuous learning and growth for team members, and collaboration. For more information, ethosvet.com.

Media Contacts
Nicole Ridgedale
Director of Corporate Marketing, LexaGene
800.215.1824 ext 206
nridgedale@lexagene.com

Investor Relations
Jay Adelaar
Vice President of Capital Markets, LexaGene
800.215.1824 ext 207
jadelaar@lexagene.com

New study boasts 90% accuracy when using PARR to diagnose canine lymphoma

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Article originally published in NEWStat, an American Animal Hospital Association Publication 

Written by Tony McReynolds


Who measures the measurements? Who diagnoses the diagnostics? In short, who assays the assays?

Veterinarians have been using polymerase chain reaction for antigen receptor rearrangement (PARR), a readily available molecular assay that helps diagnose some kinds of canine lymphoma, for years. But no one really knew how accurate those assays were—because none have undergone a truly rigorous benchmarking study to determine the accuracy of PARR assays in general, regardless of the manufacturer.

Until now.

In a study published in the Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine, Ethos Veterinary Health, Ethos Discovery, and the Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) found that their version of the test, called ePARR, was more than 90% accurate among a range of lymphoma sample types.

The results of the ePARR test study are based on an analysis of 180 dogs with cancer. The researchers used ePARR to confirm whether the dogs in the study had lymphoma and then to determine what type they had.

“We’re very excited about it,” Chand Khanna, DVM, PhD, DACVIM (Oncology), DACVP (Honorary), told NEWStat. Khanna is chief science officer of Ethos Veterinary Health, president of Ethos Discovery (a 501(c)3 independent not-for-profit incubator of scientific innovation), and co-senior author of the study.

Khanna emphasized that ePARR is not a new kind of assay but rather a new brand of assay, and the way it works to diagnose lymphoma isn’t different from what’s currently out there. He said the big takeaway here is the accuracy of the new study, which he calls “very rigorous.” He pointed out that the sheer number of dogs tested “well exceeds what has been done” in previous studies.

“What’s new is that doctors can offer [PARR assays] with a greater confidence in the performance of the assay than was possible before,” Khanna said.

Most dogs with lymphoma can be easily diagnosed using a simple microscopic evaluation of cells taken from the lymph node, so PAAR isn’t a first-line diagnostic test. However, a small minority of dogs yield tissue samples that display unusual features under the microscope, which makes some clinicians hesitant to begin treatment for lymphoma. In those cases, Khanna said, “you need a much more rigorous confirmatory test.”

PAAR, for example.

NEWStat asked Barbara Biller, DVM, DACVIM, retired associate professor of oncology at the Flint Animal Cancer Center at Colorado State University and practicing veterinarian at Boulder Road Veterinary Specialists in Lafayette, Colorado, what the study meant for veterinarians dealing with suspected cases of canine lymphoma.

“It’s further validation of [PARR],” Biller said. “We don’t need it to diagnose most cases of lymphoma but when we do need it, it can be really helpful. [The study clears up] some of the questions we have as far as how accurate it is for different samples.”

“This is the kind of data we need in this profession,” Biller added. “You have an organized, systematic evaluation of a technique. And it’s really good to see that kind of research.”

 

Read the article on NEWStat

TGEN-Ethos Study Underscores Need for Setting High Standards in Veterinary Cancer Diagnostics

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Written by Steve Yozwiak

PHOENIX, Ariz. — May 21, 2019 — Ethos Veterinary Health, Ethos Discovery, and the Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen), an affiliate of City of Hope, announced today that they have developed a highly accurate test for the diagnosis of canine lymphoma.

In a study published in the Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine (JVIM), Ethos and TGen found that their test, called ePARR, was more than 90 percent accurate among a range of lymphoma sample types (link to the complete JVIM article is below).

TGen conducted genetic analysis of more than 180 dogs with naturally occurring cancer to confirm if they had lymphoma, and then determine exactly what type of lymphoma, which is a common and aggressive cancer in dogs.

“An ongoing need exists for robust validation of molecular diagnostics in veterinary medicine. This study is an example of exhaustive validation of one such molecular test,” said Dr. Will Hendricks, an Assistant Professor in TGen’s Integrated Cancer Genomics Division, and one of the study’s co-senior authors. “Overall, ePARR is more than 90 percent accurate across sample types and diagnostic settings.”

The study authors suggest that such tests could be even more accurate if testing facilities adopted more uniform testing techniques, established uniform high performance standards, and made their results more readily available to the general research community.

“In the veterinary diagnostic area, there is a need for methodological consistency and transparency. Each lab has their own methods for how to run the same test,” said Dr. Chand Khanna, Chief Science Officer of Ethos Veterinary Health, and also a co-senior author of the study. “Our validation of ePARR included over 180 dogs and a broad diversity of sample types, including cell pellets, air dried aspirates, and formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissues.”

Shukmei Wong, who is a TGen Senior Research Associate in the Hendricks Laboratory, who conducted the study experiments, and is a co-author of the study, said: “I hope this paper will inspire more reporting of assay methods and metrics, and help drive the creation of reference standards and more consistent protocols in diagnostics in veterinary medicine.”

Dr. Sam Stewart, Science Commercialization Fellow at Ethos Veterinary Health, agrees:

“It is truly unique to see such complete rigorous validation of a molecular assay in this field, and we hope this standard of transparency and quality will be followed by others. As a Critical Care doctor, I am proud to offer this high level of quality in a diagnostic assay to my patients.”

Molecular level investigations into dog DNA could someday not only improve the health of dogs with cancer, but also help contribute to a better understanding of cancer in humans, as well.

This study was funded by non-profit Ethos Discovery, which is evaluating options to make the ePARR test available to veterinarians and pet owners.

The study — Polymerase Chain Reaction for Antigen Receptor Rearrangement (PARR): Benchmarking performance of a lymphoid clonality assay in diverse canine sample types — was published April 2 in the Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine.

No dogs were harmed during this research. Only tissue samples from pet dogs with naturally occurring cancers were examined.

 

Related Links:

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About Ethos Veterinary Health

Ethos is a veterinary health company with hospitals across the U.S. providing advanced medical care for pets. Our approach includes a focus on transformative science, continuous learning, growth for team members, and the development of collaborative relationships. For more information, visit ethosvet.com.

About Ethos Discovery

Ethos Discovery is a 501(c)(3) non-profit incubator of scientific innovation that seeks to improve health outcomes in pets and humans with complex medical problems, including cancer. For more information, please visit ethosdiscovery.org.

About TGen, an affiliate of City of Hope

Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) is a Phoenix, Arizona-based non-profit organization dedicated to conducting groundbreaking research with life-changing results. TGen is affiliated with City of Hope, a world-renowned independent research and treatment center for cancer, diabetes and other life-threatening diseases: www.cityofhope.org. This precision medicine affiliation enables both institutes to complement each other in research and patient care, with City of Hope providing a significant clinical setting to advance scientific discoveries made by TGen. TGen is focused on helping patients with neurological disorders, cancer, diabetes and infectious diseases through cutting-edge translational research (the process of rapidly moving research toward patient benefit). TGen physicians and scientists work to unravel the genetic components of both common and complex rare diseases in adults and children. Working with collaborators in the scientific and medical communities worldwide, TGen makes a substantial contribution to help our patients through efficiency and effectiveness of the translational process.

For more information, visit: www.tgen.org. Follow TGen on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter @TGen

Media Contact at TGen:
Steve Yozwiak
TGen Senior Science Writer
602-343-8704
syozwiak@tgen.org

First-Ever, Nationwide, Multicenter, Prospective Study of Canine Splenic Hemangiosarcoma

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Cutting Edge Cancer Research in Veterinary Specialty Practice: Ethos Veterinary Health Completes First-Ever, Nationwide, Multicenter, Prospective Study of Canine Splenic Hemangiosarcoma

Woburn, Mass. — Jan. 15, 2019 — Ethos Veterinary Health (Ethos) has completed the patient accrual phase of their new Canine Hemangiosarcoma Molecular Profiling (CHAMP) study.

Hemangiosarcoma is one of the most malignant forms of cancer in dogs and CHAMP is the first nationwide, multicenter, prospective study of canine splenic hemangiosarcoma, which is a cancer of the blood vessels often affecting the spleen.

“Ethos is proud of this unprecedented milestone and of our investments in innovation that will improve outcomes for our patients,” said Ames Prentiss, CEO of Ethos Veterinary Health.

The clinical description of this population of dogs with splenic tumor rupture, a common diagnosis made on an emergency basis, is expected to be submitted for publication before the end of Q1 2019 by Dr. Sam Stewart, DACVECC and colleagues at Ethos.

“I expect the CHAMP study to change many misperceptions of hemangiosarcoma in the veterinary community, and ultimately help pet owners and veterinarians make better decisions regarding treatment,” said Sam Stewart, DVM, DACVECC, Science Commercialization Fellow at Ethos Veterinary Health.

The study also provided state-of-the-art care to dogs with splenic tumor rupture over a 12-month period and allowed for the collection samples for molecular analysis. CHAMP will result in a molecular characterization of genomic alterations in canine hemangiosarcoma which will help identify dogs with distinct prognoses and potentially life-saving molecularly-targeted therapies. Publication of these genomic data is expected in Q2 2019.

“When viewed from the perspective of a veterinarian trained to treat cancer – I am a veterinary Oncologist – the new genomic analysis of this highly aggressive cancer has already provided an opportunity for me to treat dogs differently,” said Chand Khanna, DVM, PhD, DACVIM (Onc), Chief Science Officer of Ethos Veterinary Health. “We are very excited to now launch clinical trials that will assess these new treatments and change outcomes for dogs with this very aggressive cancer.”

A critical component of this prospective study will be the molecular characterization of the disease recently completed through a collaboration of Ethos and The Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen), an affiliate of City of Hope. This Ethos-TGen collaboration allowed for the use of advanced next generation sequencing technology of tumor and blood samples collected from the CHAMP dogs.

Will Hendricks, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Integrated Cancer Genomics Division of TGen, added: “The results of this collaboration between TGen and Ethos will bring needed evidence to the field of molecular and precision medicine. We are not only excited about the application of these data to dogs, but also to human patients with very similar cancers as part of a comparative approach to cancer biology and therapy, so-called comparative oncology.”

These new trials will open through Ethos practices in Q2 2019. In parallel, additional studies are ongoing to develop a molecular diagnostic to help define the prognosis of individual dogs and identify optimal molecularly derived treatments for each patient.

 

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About Ethos Veterinary Health

Ethos is a veterinary health company with hospitals across the U.S. providing advanced medical care for pets. Our approach includes a focus on transformative science, continuous learning and growth for team members and collaboration. For more information, visit ethosvet.com.

About Ethos Discovery

Ethos Discovery is a 501(c)(3) non-profit incubator of scientific innovation that seeks to improve health outcomes in pets and humans with complex medical problems, including cancer. For more information, please visit ethosdiscovery.org.

About TGen, an affiliate of City of Hope

Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) is a Phoenix, Arizona-based non-profit organization dedicated to conducting groundbreaking research with life changing results. TGen is affiliated with City of Hope, a world-renowned independent research and cancer and diabetes treatment center: www.cityofhope.org. This precision medicine affiliation enables both institutes to complement each other in research and patient care, with City of Hope providing a significant clinical setting to advance scientific discoveries made by TGen. TGen is focused on helping patients with neurological disorders, cancer, diabetes, and infectious diseases, through cutting edge translational research (the process of rapidly moving research towards patient benefit). TGen physicians and scientists work to unravel the genetic components of both common and rare complex diseases in adults and children. Working with collaborators in the scientific and medical communities literally worldwide, TGen makes a substantial contribution to help our patients through efficiency and effectiveness of the translational process. For more information, visit: www.tgen.org.