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Adaptive Biotechnologies secures $2.5m SBIR grant

Adaptive Biotechnologies, a biotechnology company, has secured a $2.5m Phase II small business innovation research (SBIR) award from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, a division of the NIH.

The award is granted to commercialize a test to measure the ability of a cancer patient’s adaptive immune system to fight infection after a cord blood transplant.

In Phase II study, the company’s immunoSEQ will be used prospectively over a period of three-years on approximately 400 cord blood transplant recipients from five top transplant centers in the US, to measure the T-cell and B-cell diversity.

The Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center cord blood transplant program director Dr Colleen Delany noted identifying patients at risk for infection early after transplant is something that they strive to do in the clinic, but the current standard of using total T-cell counts seems to be suboptimal.

"We are pleased to be leading this effort to identify a better way to measure immunity and ultimately increase overall survival for our transplant patients," Delany added.

The Phase II study follows the company’s successful Phase I results showing a statistical correlation between low diversity of infection-fighting immune cells (T-cells) and high likelihood of death from complications, including infection, during the first year after transplant.

The award is for a multi-center collaboration with MD Anderson, the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, City of Hope, Duke University, and the University of Colorado.