The University of Manchester spinout company PharmaKure in the UK has entered an agreement with APIS Assay Technologies for Alzheimer’s disease (AD) biomarkers detection.

Under the agreement, the companies will advance a development project for utilising single-stranded DNA oligonucleotides, Clickmers, for the highly selective identification of biomarkers linked to AD. Clickmers are modified using Click chemistry.

APIS technology head Dr Helen Fielder said: “Using APIS’ novel Clickmer technology, we aim to deliver highly specific and high-affinity detection of Alzheimer’s biomarkers, to support earlier detection of the disease.

“Earlier detection, alongside PharmaKure’s lead drug candidate PK051, has the potential to significantly improve the treatment of AD patients.”

The companies will accelerate specific Clickmers development to target biomarkers linked to AD pathology and their clinical validation for diagnostic purposes.

Blood biomarkers, including aggregated α-synuclein, aggregated Tau (Total and pTAU (181)), amyloid-b (Total, Ab40 and Ab42), NFL and DJ-1, have connections with the pathology of AD.

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The Clickmer technology will be utilised for precisely and sensitively quantifying the levels of these biomarkers in blood.

PharmaKure CEO Dr Farid Khan said: “We are excited to collaborate with APIS on the possibility of using Clickmers for advancing increased binding affinity towards Alzheimer’s biomarkers such as amyloid-b.

“This is one of the steps to bring to the market effective disease-modifying therapeutics in AD by combining our lead drug candidate PK051 with an early detection of disease-related biomarker assays.”