Anixa Biosciences, Inc. a biotechnology company focused on using the body’s immune system to fight cancer, announced that its two presentations at the 33rd Annual Meeting of The Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC) are now available on its website at www.anixa.com. The presentations discuss the ongoing studies utilizing Cchek™, Anixa’s artificial intelligence (AI) driven early cancer detection technology. Both presentations focus on prostate cancer which Anixa has announced will be its first commercial focus.
The podium presentation titled, “Using artificial intelligence to distinguish subjects with prostate cancer (PCa) from benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) through immunophenotyping of MDSCs and lymphocyte cell populations,” was presented on November 10, and the poster presentation with the same title was available at various times throughout the conference.
Anixa’s Cchek™ technology utilizes flow cytometry to measure and study circulating white blood cells. Since there is a dynamic interaction between the immune system (white blood cells) and a tumor, by measuring changes in the white blood cells Cchek™ is able to identify the presence of a tumor. The technology utilizes the human immune system as the amplification technique, or sentinel, to indicate the presence of a tumor. The volume and complexity of the data requires an AI application known as a neural network, which can be trained to discern patterns, to perform the analysis.
The goals of these studies are to effectively distinguish between cancer patients and healthy males, as well as to distinguish between males that have aggressive cancer and those that have benign conditions that are not cancer. The current testing paradigm, utilizing the measurement of prostate specific antigen (PSA), causes many men to unnecessarily undergo painful, expensive, and risk-laden biopsies.
While both presentations are available on Anixa’s website, or can be requested by sending an email to SITCemail@example.com, their content is technical so Anixa would like to summarize the key findings, some of which have been discussed earlier.
- While these studies focused on prostate cancer, the technology has shown that it can detect up to twenty different types of tumors.
- The study demonstrates that the amount of data measured for each patient is considerable and requires AI to analyze. Anixa’s AI application is better able to perform the analysis than a human scientist or physician.
- Sensitivity and specificity, as measures of accuracy when distinguishing between cancer and healthy individuals was 90% or greater. This performance, though on a modest number of samples, is dramatically better than conventional PSA testing.
- In the US alone, about 1.3 MM men undergo prostate biopsies annually. This number is driven primarily by PSA testing results. Of these biopsies, 100-150 thousand are found to have malignant or advanced prostate cancer that requires surgery or other invasive treatment. Anixa’s study demonstrates that if Cchek™ were used to test these men, more than half—or about 600 thousand—of all unnecessary biopsies could be avoided.
“As we continue to advance our technology and present superior data, we are looking forward to discussing this program with regulators. To that end, the US FDA has scheduled a meeting for initial discussions regarding an approval path. That meeting will take place on 17 December 2018 and we expect to have finalized minutes from that meeting by mid-January 2019,” stated Dr. Amit Kumar, President and CEO of Anixa Biosciences. Dr. Kumar added, “With the potential for so dramatically reducing the number of unnecessary prostate biopsies, we are committed to developing a commercialization pathway that will positively impact patients as soon as possible.”