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‘IO125 will be in clinics in 2017’

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Invictus Oncology’s IO125 molecule is predicted to be one of the most effective treatments for Triple Negative Breast Cancer (TNBC). Dr Shiladitya Sengupta, Director and Co-founder, Invictus Oncology, reveals more to Sachin Jagdale

Explain the concept of supramolecular therapeutics in oncology?

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Dr Shiladitya Sengupta

Supramolecular therapeutics are a new class of anticancer agents that are designed to ‘home’ into the tumour. This increases the efficacy of the anticancer treatment while minimising the off target toxicity. The drugs are engineered using a computational platform technology.

What are the rationale behind rising cases of breast cancers in India?

The reason for increasing cases is still not clear. It could be changing life styles to increased exposure to different chemicals that can induce mutations. Also, the awareness is increasing hence more cancers are being diagnosed. However, it is clear that there are more cancer patients in India than in the US, and 70 per cent of mortality due to cancer globally happen in the developing countries. More people die of cancer in developing countries than due to malaria, TB and HIV added together.

IO125 is being developed to treat Triple Negative Breast Cancer (TNBC). What will be its advantages over the drugs currently available in the market?

There are hardly any drugs available today to treat TNBC. IO125 is a new class of molecules that is showing excellent activity in TNBC and offers an expanded treatment option to these patients.

How long will it take to commercialise IO125?

IO125 will be in clinics in 2017. That is a huge value inflection point for Invictus.

India is a cost sensitive market. What will be the cost of IO125 once it is launched in the market?

Invictus Oncology was started in India for precisely addressing this challenge. Did we not build visionary companies that serviced the bottom of the pyramid globally with cheap drugs while being commercial successes. Our vision is to ensure that the best treatment is always available to a patient.

How much have been invested in developing IO125 so far?

Invictus has raised a total of $4M, and is currently raising a larger round.

Do you have any other molecules in the pipeline?

Invictus is a platform technology company. We have already developed several pipeline molecules, which target major targets in cancer such as altered immune components and kinases.

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