Dr. Sophie Olivier appointed as chief medical officer of Genticel team
Genticel, a biopharmaceutical company developing innovative therapeutic vaccines for patients infected with human papillomavirus (HPV), today announces that it has started a phase II study with its lead product ProCervix, a therapeutic vaccine designed to induce a curative cellular immune response in patients infected with HPV16 and/or HPV18. The high-risk human papillomavirus HPV16 and/or HPV18 types are responsible for 70 per cent of cervical cancers worldwide.
ProCervix is targeted at women already infected by the HPV16 and/or HPV18 viruses before high-grade lesions or cancer occur. It is the first therapeutic vaccine to address the medical need of this high-risk population, because the preventive HPV vaccines are only effective in people who are not yet infected.
The Phase I study was conducted at the Vaccine and Infectious Disease Institute of the University of Antwerp, Belgium under the direction of Professor Pierre Van Damme. The results indicated that ProCervix has a satisfactory safety, local tolerance and immunogenicity profile. This study revealed the dose and vaccination regime required for further development. The clearance of HPV virus and maintenance of virus-free status was also markedly higher in the patients treated with ProCervix versus those in the placebo group.
Based on these promising results with ProCervix, endorsed by an international group of experts, Genticel has initiated a randomized, placebo-controlled efficacy Phase II trial. This multi-centric trial has received favorable scientific advice from the European Medical Agency (EMA) and runs across several European countries.
Dr. Sophie Olivier appointed as chief medical officer
Genticel has recruited Dr. Sophie Olivier as chief medical officer to lead the clinical development of its pipeline, in particular the ProCervix phase II trial. Dr. Olivier has over 20 years of experience in gynecology, women’s health and regulatory affairs.
Dr. Sophie Olivier was scientific administrator at the European Medicines Agency (EMA) in London, UK. She was responsible for assessing Pediatric Investigational Plans, in particular vaccines. Prior to EMA, Dr. Olivier also worked for 15 years with Wyeth. As a senior director, Women’s Health and Bone Repair, she was responsible for designing and implementing international clinical development programs in women’s health, leading to FDA and European submissions.
Dr. Olivier is an MD from Aix-Marseille University. She also holds a Master’s degree in Reproductive Biology and a Science and Statistics Masters from Pierre and Marie Curie University – Paris VI.
“We are very pleased to welcome Dr. Olivier. Her expertise in drug development, especially in vaccines and gynecology, and her experience at the EMA are considerable assets for Genticel, in particular for the ProCervix Phase II trial,” said Benedikt Timmerman, CEO of Genticel. “ProCervix is a first-in-class therapeutic HPV vaccine aimed at treating HPV infected women for whom no therapeutic options currently exist and with only ‘watchful waiting’ as an alternative.”
“I am thrilled to join the team at Genticel and to work on the development of these promising therapeutic vaccines,” said Dr. Olivier. “The phase I for the therapeutic candidate vaccine was successful and I look forward to pursuing its development in Europe and abroad.”
About the Human Papillomavirus (HPV)
Recent estimates by the World Health Organization suggest that worldwide approximately 300 million women are carriers of HPV. Of these, about 93 million are infected with HPV16 and/or HPV18 types. Of this population approximately 350,000 patients are diagnosed with cervical cancer each year.
About Genticel SA
Genticel is a leading biopharmaceutical company developing therapeutic vaccines against cancer. The company specializes in therapeutic vaccines aimed at eliminating HPV at early stage. HPV is responsible for the development of cervical cancer. A second vaccine-candidate is in pre-clinical development to target the six most relevant types of HPV. Genticel is based in Paris and Toulouse, France.
For more information: http://www.genticel.com
Dubai's new smart neuro spinal hospital: need to know
We take a look at Dubai's new smart hospital.
What: The Neuro Spinal Hospital and Radiosurgery Centre is a new hospital featuring state-of-the-art technology for spinal, neurosurgical, neurological, orthopaedic, radiosurgery and cancer treatments. The 700 million AED hospital, (equivalent to £138 million), has 114 beds, smart patient rooms, and green spaces for patient rehabilitation, and is four times the capacity of its former premises in Jumeirah. It is also the UAE’s first hospital to have surgical robots.
Where: The hospital is located in the Dubai Science Park. Founded in 2005, Dubai Science Park is home to more than 350 companies from multinational corporations in life sciences, biotechnology and research; over 4,000 people work here each day.
Who: The UAE's Neuro Spinal Hospital and Radiosurgery Centre was first established in Jumeirah in 2002 by Dr. Abdul Karim Msaddi, as the first as the first "super-specialty" neuroscience hospital.
Why: With advanced diagnosis and robotics, the hospital will provide care across neuroscience, spine, orthopaedics and oncology for people residing in the UAE, as well as international patients.
Prof. Abdul Karim Msaddi, Chairman and Medical Director of the hospital, said: “We are proud to bring world-class healthcare services to Dubai and believe our next-generation hospital will be a game-changer for the emirate’s and the region’s medical industry.
"It will not only significantly increase the availability of specialist neuroscience and radiosurgery treatments and provide better patient care but help attract and develop local and international talent. Investing in the new centre represents our continued faith in the resilience of the region’s economy, as well as a testament to our ongoing drive towards healthcare innovation in the UAE.”