MiReven, an Australian microRNA company commercialising discoveries from the Western Australian Institute for Medical Research (WAIMR) on the anti-cancer potential of miR-7, today announced that it had received a further AU$500K investment from the Medical Research Commercialisation Fund (MRCF) due to the successful completion of various technical and commercial milestones. This brings the total that the MRCF has invested in MiReven since its foundation in 2010 to AU$1.1M.
MiReven recently signed two international R&D collaborations to investigate the therapeutic efficacy of systemically delivered miR-7 in several different cancer models, thereby strengthening the potential of miR-7 as a treatment for cancer. The first agreement is with Silence Therapeutics, announced on August 22, to use Silence’s proprietary AtuPLEXTM and DACC delivery systems to evaluate miR-7 in various cancer models. Silence will formulate a miR-7 mimetic and then use it to undertake in vitro and in vivo studies. An important second deal, signed with another undisclosed international company, takes a similarly strategic approach to positioning miR-7 as a cancer therapeutic.
Dr Stephen Thompson, Chairman of MiReven Pty Ltd, said:
“We are thrilled with our progress at MiReven. This pivotal funding from the MRCF allows MiReven to expand and undertake in vivo studies to examine the delivery of miR-7 with independent parties. The deal with Silence Therapeutics is particularly important to us as it is critically important to the development of microRNA drugs to find the right delivery method so that they can reach important cancer targets. Looking to the future, once these studies are complete, we aim to identify a development partner to take miR-7 into the clinic.”
Dr Chris Nave, Principal Executive of the MRCF commented:
“MRCF is delighted to be once again backing the world class discoveries from WAIMR. In particular we would also like to thank the Western Australian government for its ongoing support of the MRCF.”
Professor Peter Klinken, Director of the WAIMR, added:
“Congratulations to Peter Leedman and his WAIMR team for their exciting achievements, which have been made possible by the vision and invaluable support of the State, UWA and MRCF. The investment from all stakeholders is not only helping to commercialise WA created innovation, but also supporting high tech jobs and some of our brightest young medical researchers.”