Xosomix, a pre-clinical drug discovery company focused on harnessing diagnostic and therapeutic use of exosomes, the critical communication and transport mediators of the body, announced today the awarding of phase I SBIR grant from Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD). This grant will enable Xosomix to develop an early diagnostic biomarker for endometriosis.
Approximately 10% of reproductive age women, more than 4 million in United States alone, are affected by endometriosis. This is an underestimate as invasive surgery is the only FDA approved diagnosis of endometriosis. Endometriosis is seen in 12-32% of women undergoing surgery for pelvic pain and up to 50% of women undergoing surgery for infertility. About 60% of cases are undiagnosed and it’s common to see delay in diagnosis by 8-10 years. Economic impact from endometriosis is estimated to be ~$121B per year. In spite of tremendous physical, psychological, and economic costs, the FDA approved non-invasive diagnosis of endometriosis remains elusive. Xosomix, in collaboration with Dr. Sanjay Agarwal, MD, Director of Fertility Services and Center for Endometriosis Research & Treatment at UC San Diego Health, seek to overcome hurdles in traditional approaches by focusing on cellular messengers called extracellular vesicles or ‘exosomes’ from menstrual effluent for the discovery of the non-invasive biomarker of endometriosis.
Exosomes are nanoscopic sacs secreted by all cells and are key mediators of communication and transport in the body. In a disease state, the message in exosomes is changed, relaying the earliest 911 distress call to the body asking for help. Xosomix has a proprietary platform technology that can tap into all the signals in exosomes on an individual basis at discovery phase. Unlike existing approaches, this enables Xosomix to compare these signals both within and across patient and control groups. Xosomix has been successful in using the same blueprint to discover the biomarker cohort for neural dysfunction in Rett Syndrome, a developmental neurological disorder. To improve healthcare equity, Xosomix’s personalized and multiplexed approach to biomarker discovery identifies potential biomarkers that fare well across gender and racial differences.
Xosomix also has therapeutic pipeline for the treatment of Rett Syndrome and Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) with Dr. Peng Loh at the NIH for developing a treatment for Alzheimer’s disease.