License Agreement Brings Together Research Leaders in Pursuit of
Apoptosis Detection Technology to Better Manage Medical Treatment of Cancer
SYDNEY, AUS. & ST. LOUIS, October 4 /CNW/ - NewSouth Innovations Pty
Limited, the technology transfer arm of University of New South Wales (UNSW),
and Covidien Ltd. (NYSE: COV, BSX: COV) today announced the signing of a
license agreement to develop an innovative, radiolabeled molecular imaging
agent for evaluating the efficacy of cancer treatments. This technology could
assist oncologists in determining the effectiveness of treatment and the
necessity for other therapeutic measures.
Based in Sydney, Australia, UNSW is a leader in the field of adult cancer
research with internationally recognized medical scientists. Covidien Imaging
Solutions, which is based in St. Louis, Missouri (USA), is a leading provider
of imaging products used by physicians to detect and diagnose various
Under the exclusive, worldwide agreement, Covidien Imaging Solutions has
product development and commercialization rights for this apoptosis
technology, which was invented by Professor Philip Hogg, who is a co-director
of the Lowy Cancer Research Centre. The family of small molecules developed by
Professor Hogg is designed to bind to cancer cells undergoing apoptosis, or
the process of cell death, as a result of chemotherapy treatment.
"This discovery stems from more than 10 years of research focused on the
design of molecular probes to study cellular processes," said Professor Hogg.
"These molecules are uniquely designed to attach to proteins inside cells
undergoing apoptosis driven by chemotherapy."
This early-stage apoptosis detection technology could take many years to
develop, but it has the potential for broad application across a wide array of
solid tumor cancers. According to data from the World Health Organization's
International Agency for Research on Cancer, there are approximately 11
million new cases of cancer worldwide each year. Along with helping doctors to
assess therapeutic responses non-invasively, this apoptosis technology would
support the movement toward personalized or targeted therapies based on a
patient's specific needs.
"This license agreement demonstrates Covidien's focus on technology that
is intended to improve patient care," said Steve Hanley, President of Covidien
Imaging Solutions. "Our goal is to diagnose diseases or disease processes as
early as possible. Apoptosis imaging would assist physicians in personalizing
a patient's treatment by reducing the time needed to gauge the effectiveness
In addition, pharmaceutical companies may use the apoptosis technology to
evaluate new products for cancer treatment. Apoptosis-detecting imaging agents
may also have applications outside of cancer, such as in neurological and
cardiac disease following strokes and heart attacks.
Covidien is a leading global healthcare products company that creates
innovative medical solutions for better patient outcomes and delivers value
through clinical leadership and excellence. Covidien manufactures, distributes
and services a diverse range of industry-leading product lines, including
Surgical Devices, Energy-Based Devices, Respiratory and Monitoring Solutions,
Patient Care and Safety Products, Imaging Solutions, Pharmaceutical Products,
Medical Supplies and Retail Products. With 2006 revenue of nearly $10 billion,
Covidien has more than 43,000 employees worldwide in 57 countries, and its
products are sold in over 130 countries. Please visit www.covidien.com to
learn more about our business.
ABOUT UNIVERSITY OF NEW SOUTH WALES
The Sydney-based University of New South Wales (UNSW) is one of
Australia's leading teaching and research universities. Ranked in the top 50
in the world, UNSW boasts close to 40,000 students and is recognized as a
leader in the field of medical research.
NewSouth Innovations Pty Limited (NSi), UNSW's technology transfer arm,
specialises in transforming research and technology developed at UNSW into a
successful venture or product. With more than 45 years' experience NSi
evaluates research technologies, identifies appropriate collaboration
opportunities and provides industry partners and investors with access to a
wide range of technologies with broad commercial potential.
For further information:
For further information: Covidien Nancy Stauder, 314-654-8548 Director,
Marketing Communications firstname.lastname@example.org or David Young,
508-261-6330 Manager, Media Relations email@example.com or Cole Lannum,
508-452-4343 Vice President, Investor Relations firstname.lastname@example.org or
Bruce Farmer, 508-452-4372 Director, Financial Communications