Aptorum Group Limited (Nasdaq: APM, Euronext Paris: APM) ) (“Aptorum Group” or “Aptorum”), a biopharmaceutical company focused on novel technologies including the targeting of infectious diseases, announced its launch of Aptorum Innovations – an infectious disease liquid biopsy diagnostics subsidiary and its newly established exclusive in-licensing arrangements with Accelerate Technologies Pte Ltd (“Accelerate Technologies”), commercialization arm of the Singapore’s Agency for Science, Technology and Research (“A*STAR”), to co-develop novel molecular-based rapid pathogen identification and detection diagnostics (“RPIDD”) technology. Aptorum Innovations, intends to target the global molecular diagnostics market estimated to reach USD$13.8billion in market size by 2025, of which 60% is estimated to be attributable to the infectious disease segment1, with its next-generation RPIDD technology.
The RPIDD technology was initiated and currently under development at A*STAR. The core objectives of RPIDD are to rapidly and accurately identify and detect existing or emerging unknown pathogens (including DNA/RNA-based viruses such as coronavirus, antibiotic-resistant bacteria, fungi, etc.), in a cost-effective, unbiased and broad-spectrum manner, through liquid biopsy (patients’ blood samples and is potentially adaptable for other sample types), genome sequencing and artificial intelligence driven software analytics. A key objective is also to develop RPIDD to leverage existing and emerging Next-Generation Sequencing platforms for pathogenic genome sequencing analysis.
Aptorum Innovations Pte Ltd (“Aptorum Innovations”), a subsidiary of Aptorum Group, is the exclusive licensee and commercializing party of the technology being developed in close cooperation with A*STAR and licensed by Accelerate Technologies. Subject to further validation and optimization of the RPIDD technology, Aptorum Group intends to open its initial series of RPIDD-driven infectious disease liquid biopsy diagnostics laboratories over the course of the next two years, with at least one flagship location in Singapore in collaboration with local hospitals and clinics; other targeted follow-on locations include the United States, European Union and the United Kingdom. Through A*STAR, the technology is currently undergoing product optimization at its Diagnostics Development Hub (DxD) and A*STAR will continue to perform further clinical validation with Singapore based hospital provider; Aptorum Innovations will facilitate further clinical validation with other locations including but not limited to Australia-based Talem Medical Group, Raffles Medical Group (Hong Kong) and other future collaboration potentials.
Dr. Clark Cheng, Chief Medical Officer and Executive Director of Aptorum Group, commented: “With the significant worldwide disruption caused by the COVID19 pandemic and the current global focus on antimicrobial resistance, further to our recent joining with the BEAM alliance2, Aptorum Group expands its potential infectious disease liquid biopsy diagnostics capabilities in synergy with its current infectious disease platform (for example, the leading Staphylococcus aureus drug program ALS-4) and supports worldwide antimicrobial stewardship policies (ASPs). Bacteremia infections, for example, alone cause nearly 500,000 hospitalizations in the United States annually and account for 11 percent of intensive care unit (ICU) admissions with over $20.3 billion in aggregate cost3. Mortality associated with these infections is extremely high and can range anywhere from 25 percent to 80 percent4. In accordance with Infectious Diseases Society of America’s (IDSA) policy paper5, many patients with suspected infections receive empiric antimicrobial therapy rather than appropriate specialized therapy dictated by rapid identification of the infectious agent and as a result, leading to nearly 50% of inappropriate overuse of our small inventory of antimicrobials challenged by rising levels of antimicrobial resistance6. Current blood culture-based testing is often inaccurate and time-consuming (up to 3 days on average7) resulting in unnecessary patient morbidity and increased risks of mortality. Moreover, current broad spectrum molecular diagnostics are often too cost-benefit prohibitive8 and therefore are not adopted as the first line of diagnostics for healthcare providers – with our technology we target to reduce end user costs by over 60% (or more) relative to current service provider average prices. With the forecast global molecular diagnostics market size to reach over US$13.8billion by 2025, the need to integrate broad-spectrum and affordable rapid molecular diagnostics into day-to-day clinical care and public health has never been greater and the RPIDD technology is being developed to target the improvement of clinical outcomes for patients and tracking of unknown pathogens in a cost-effective manner for our healthcare system9. Aptorum Group, through its subsidiary Aptorum Innovations, intends to commercialize RPIDD through the future set up of proprietary clinical microbiology laboratories as part of our dedicated focus to counter worldwide infectious disease related issues and will explore future collaborations with, for example, other NGS platforms to support this endeavour. It is with great pleasure to announce our planned global diagnostics expansion via Singapore’s robust healthcare ecosystems, such as this cooperation with A*STAR whose experienced and innovative molecular engineering team we are confident will help disrupt the global infectious disease liquid biopsy diagnostics market and further promote molecular-based diagnostics as the first line of defence for infectious diseases.”
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