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Sofie Biosciences Is Awarded a US Patent on a Family of Novel PET Probes for Use in Oncology and Immunology
Date:1/24/2012

CULVER CITY, Calif., Jan. 24, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Sofie Biosciences, Inc., offering a comprehensive range of products from pre-clinical PET imaging systems to new PET molecular imaging probes to better understand human disease, has been told that a U.S. Patent (8,101,740) will be granted by the United States Patent Office on technology that has been exclusively licensed to Sofie. The patent covers a family of novel PET probes, known as [18F]FAC.

Positron Emission Tomography (PET) is a molecular imaging technology that utilizes minute amounts of labeled molecules ("probes") to target and measure biological and pharmacological processes. Basic scientists can use the same probes to examine cells and mice, as physicians do in patients to visualize and characterize the biology of disease, monitor its progression, and evaluate therapeutic efficacy.

Basic and clinical scientists at UCLA invented this novel PET probe, [18F]FAC, which was created by a slight modification of the drug molecule, gemcitabine, one of the most common drugs for cancer.  Cancer cells lack the normal checks and balances to limit cell growth.  [18F]FAC provides an in vivo imaging assay of cell growth known as the DNA salvage pathway.  Tumors use the salvage pathway to provide high rates of DNA replication for their uncontrolled growth of cells containing malignant instructions.

[18F]FAC measures the enzyme, dCK, which controls the rate of DNA production through the salvage pathway. Cancer drugs like gemcitabine use dCK to convert the drug into a pharmacologically active product that blocks the high rates of DNA replication for growth of malignant cells, and induces DNA damage in cancer cells. One of Sofie's objectives with [18F]FAC is to use PET imaging to allow physicians the means to search throughout the body for tumors that will respond to drugs that target dCK (like gemcitabine and other drugs), thus enabling more patient-specific treatment selecti
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