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Preclinical Oncology Services Ltd. (PRECOS), a leading pre-clinical research and development service provider with a specific focus on oncology, has launched PRECOS Unique Models of Acquired resistance (PUMA). Derived from cell lines and proprietary PDX (Patient-Derived Xenograft) models, PUMA models provide a unique bespoke collection of clinically relevant and validated models of resistance, as well as the techniques and expertise to develop client specific models of acquired resistance to chemotherapeutics and targeted agents. Such models are a major advancement for pharmaceutical and biotech companies running oncology R&D programs and will enhance success rates during the critical phase of transitioning from preclinical to clinical evaluation of new drug candidates.

The first available examples of PUMA models are in specific lung cancer subsets where PRECOS has previously developed and characterized a focused panel of PDX lung cancer models derived directly from Caucasian patient tumor material – PRECOS’ unique model atlas LION (Lung In ONcology). By repeatedly challenging relatively homogeneous cell line populations (CTX models) and heterogeneous tumors from PDX models across several passages, PRECOS is able to compare and contrast behavior such as growth characteristics with gene expression and pathway analysis, response to chemotherapeutics and targeted agents. It is also possible to assess the effect of varying treatment regimens and dosing strategies including drug holidays or combination therapies. This allows panels of tumor subset specific models to be built which are able to mimic patients and their responses to treatment regimes in the clinic.

PRECOS is committed to further developing PUMA and is continuing to progress the techniques to provide customised services. This will enable its clients to build models based on the characteristics of diverse cancer cell types which can offer insights for designing optimal treatment strategies around their preclinical candidates prior to product development and clinical trials.

“As oncology R&D progresses, there is an increasingly critical need for more clinically-relevant predictive pre-clinical models in order to overcome the high attrition rates of agents entering clinical trials,” said Dr Martin Page, Scientific Consultant, PRECOS. “All new agents entering Phase 1 clinical trials will be tested in cancer patients that have likely become resistant to a range of targeted and chemotherapeutic agents. PUMA is part of our PREdict platform, and offers PRECOS’ clients pre-clinical models that are authentic counterparts of the drug-resistant tumor subsets seen in the clinic, rather than drug-naive models. PRECOS’ latest portfolio offers specialist drug resistant pre-clinical models with responses of higher predictability with outcomes that can be seen during clinical testing.”

Preclinical Oncology Services Ltd.

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