Boston-based biotech startup Immunotrex Biologics is partnering with research firm Interventional Concepts on an anti-sepsis compound clinical trial that it intends to hold in Colombia. The “Phase 0 human study” aims to analyze the effects of the compound in the human system and how the human body processes it.
Per the arrangement, Interventional Concepts will design the trial and chose the center and principal investigator in Colombia in conjunction with JSS Research, which is headquartered in Montreal, Canada. The pair will also coordinate the regulatory red tape and other necessary processes, or “tramites,” required to run such a study in Colombia.
The Andean nation has increasingly been making a name for itself in this sector and the government, through its ProColombia promotion arm, is now actively seeking more companies to host a Colombia clinical trial.
“Colombia is uniquely position to be the most cost-effective destination in Latin America for this type of clinical studies,” said Julio G. Martinez-Clark, president and CEO of Interventional Concepts. He added that, “we are proud of being part of the development of this breakthrough anti-sepsis compound.”
Immunotrex’s Colombia Clinical Trial
According to Immunotrex Biologics, sepsis, which is a life-threatening condition that can occur if a person’s immune system response to infection damages tissues and organs, is among the costliest healthcare expenses. In terms of in-patient cost in U.S. hospitals, it ran over $20 billion in 2011, with some 40% of patients who were diagnosed with severe sepsis dying.
“Until a cure for sepsis is found, early detection is the surest hope for survival,” said the company in a statement. “Up to 50% of survivors suffer from post-sepsis syndrome. In the U.S., sepsis is the second-leading cause of death in non-coronary ICU patients and the 10th-most-common cause of death overall.”
The company also stated that an average of three out of 1,000 people get severe sepsis, which leads to 215,000 deaths every year in the United States alone. Its clinical trial will focus on a series of therapeutic agents and compounds called KDEON that it developed along with researchers at the University of Massachusetts, Lowell. The remedy aims to neutralize and block the negative effects of endotoxins and other processes that contribute to sepsis.
“Immunotrex looks to fast track this crucial life-saving therapeutic into hospitals to save patients lives when facing septic shock,” said Syed K. Hasan, founder and CEO of Immunotrex Biologics.