Berg Partners With Department of Defense Research Center and Military Medical Foundation to Advance Prostate Cancer Research
Open data-sharing collaboration with Uniformed Services University and Henry M. Jackson Foundation for the Advancement of Military Medicine offers new model for scientific discovery
BOSTON, Aug. 9, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Berg, a biopharmaceutical company committed to uncovering health solutions through a data-driven, biological research approach, announced today an ambitious new partnership with the U.S. Department of Defense under a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement with the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences' (USU) Center for Prostate Disease Research (CPDR) and The Henry M. Jackson Foundation for the Advancement of Military Medicine, Inc. (HJF) to offer hope, and possibly one day a cure, for the 238,590 men diagnosed with prostate cancer each year.
"The CPDR has embarked on one of the most comprehensive prostate cancer research programs in the world and we are honored to be working with such a forward-thinking organization," said Niven R. Narain, Co-Founder, President and CTO of Berg. "This collaboration is an ideal marriage of the CPDR's extensive prostate cancer expertise and Berg's unparalleled ability to drive a deeper level of biological understanding. Together, we have the potential to change the meaning of a prostate cancer diagnosis, and hopefully prognosis, while exemplifying how industry and government can work together to enact real change in public health."
As part of this partnership, Berg and the CPDR will take a data-driven approach to drive molecular intelligence of prostate cancer by uncovering more accurate biomarkers and better therapies for patients. Berg will lend its expertise in computational biology and its proprietary Interrogative Biology™ Platform to analyze the CPDR's extensive supply of prostate cancer data.
"Innovative collaborations, like this one with Berg, are the wave of the future in scientific discovery, and our goal is to illuminate actionable insights from the high volume of prostate cancer data we have generated to move science forward in a significant way," said Army Colonel (ret) David G. McLeod, M.D., Director, and Albert Dobi, Ph.D., Associate Director at the CPDR.
Prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed non-cutaneous cancer in men and is the second most common cause of male death from cancer. In 2012, approximately 238,590 men in the U.S. were diagnosed with prostate cancer and an estimated 28,170 died from the disease. In addition, major population disparities in prostate cancer incidence and mortality need to be addressed through new diagnostic and prognostic marker discoveries.
About the Berg Interrogative Biology™ Platform
Berg's application of Artificial Intelligence in biology and medicine allows for a combination of systems biology and systems engineering leading to well defined answers on human health. The Berg Interrogative Biology™ Platform integrates molecular data directly from a patient with clinical and demographic information to learn predictive patterns. The platform has the potential to provide the physician with actionable information to recommend efficient and safe treatment pathways, insurance companies with health economics analyses to develop more relevant formulary and governments with a data ecosystem for financial modeling of health care needs of the population.
Using the Interrogative Biology Platform, the company has successfully harnessed the ability of its lead oncology candidate, BPM 31510, to create an anti-cancer effect. Phase I and II clinical trials of a topical formulation of BPM 31510 for the treatment of skin cancers have been completed, as has a Phase I dose escalation clinical trial of an intravenous formulation of BPM 31510 for the treatment of solid tumors and leukemia. In addition, BPM 31543 is in Phase I trials for the prevention of chemotherapy-induced alopecia.
Berg is a biopharmaceutical company and parent company to Berg Pharma, Berg Biosystems and Berg Diagnostics. Our research focus seeks to understand how alterations in metabolism relate to disease onset. We have uncovered key insight into metabolic control factors and namely into underlying elements in the Warburg Hypothesis. The company has a deep pipeline of early-stage technologies in CNS diseases and metabolic diseases that complement its late-stage clinical trial activity in cancer and prevention of chemotoxicity. Armed with use of the discovery platform that translates biological output into viable therapeutics and a robust biomarker library, Berg is poised to realize its pursuit of a healthier tomorrow.
The Uniformed Services University's Center for Prostate Disease Research is a state-of-the-art translational research program that studies prostate cancer and prostate disease in the military health care system. Since its inception in 1992, the center has developed a comprehensive prostate cancer database within the DoD, with approximately 27,000 prostate subjects enrolled to date; a leading prostate cancer research center credited with ground breaking discoveries; and a prostate cancer clinical trials center at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. For more information, visit www.cpdr.org. The CPDR is a program of the Department of Surgery at USU and is administered by HJF.
The Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences is the nation's federal health sciences university. USU students are primarily active-duty uniformed officers in the Army, Navy, Air Force and Public Health Service who have received specialized education in tropical and infectious diseases, preventive medicine, traumatic brain injury and posttraumatic stress, disaster response and humanitarian assistance, and acute trauma.
A large percentage of the University's nearly 5,000 physician and 1,000 advanced practice nursing alumni are supporting operations around the world, offering their leadership and expertise. The University also has graduate programs in biomedical sciences and public health, most open to civilian and military applicants, and oral biology. The programs are committed to excellence in research and have awarded more than 400 doctoral and 900 masters degrees to date. For more information about USU and its programs, visit www.usuhs.mil.
The Henry M. Jackson Foundation for the Advancement of Military Medicine, Inc. is a private, not-for-profit organization established in 1983 and authorized by the U.S. Congress to support medical research and education at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences and throughout the military medical community. For more information, visit www.hjf.org.