Medical technology company Proteomics International (ASX: PIQ) has teamed up with biotech stock Dimerix (ASX: DXB) to investigate the potential of their combined technology in treating kidney disease.
Dimerix has developed the DMX-200 drug for treating the disease while Proteomics has created a PromarkerD which is a predictive and diagnostic tool that measures a protein biomarker panel in the blood, which assists in early detection diabetic kidney disease.
In a recent Phase 2a clinical trial, the DMX-200 was shown as a safe with “promising efficacy signals” especially in diabetic kidney disease patients.
Meanwhile, the PromarkerD has predicted rapid kidney function decline in clinical studies – up to four years prior to onset.
When combined with the DMX-200, the companies anticipate they may be able to delay disease onset or prevent it entirely.
As part of the joint effort, Proteomics and Dimerix will conduct early phase clinical trials to evaluate the effectiveness of using PromarkerD as a companion diagnostic test in conjunction with DMX-200 when treating chronic kidney disease.
The PromarkerD can be used in clinical trials to identify patients at risk, enable more accurate drug dosing and monitor outcomes and side effects.
If PromarkerD is effective in the trial, then Dimerix will have the option to licence the diagnostic tool for ongoing use.
“Chronic kidney disease is a massive and rapidly growing issue,” Dimerix chief executive officer Kathy Harrison said, adding “many patients are diagnosed too late and the existing treatments can have little to no effect.”
“Having a test which can predict disease progression will undoubtedly be beneficial to both controlling disease and treating it with new drugs like DMX-200,” she said.
According to Proteomics, 422 million people live with diabetes, and one in three of adult diabetes patients suffer from chronic kidney disease.
In the US, kidney disease is the ninth leading cause of death and cost the country more than US$50 billion a year in associated health costs.
Preliminary results from the clinical trial are anticipated in 2018.
Shares in Dimerix rose more than 8% to A$0.13 in early morning trade, while Proteomics’ stock remained unchanged at A$0.25.