Area biotech firm, fighting cancer, wins big award
By: Business Observer
November 02, 2017
TAMPA — Interpares Biomedicine, a biotech company founded by Tampa-based Moffitt Cancer Center faculty members Howard McLeod and Neil Mason — who used their own money to get it up and running — won the 2017 BioPitch Competition at BioFlorida’s annual conference last month in St. Petersburg.
According to a press release, Interpares Biomedicine is an early-stage immuno-oncology company that has created a suite of diagnostic tools designed to help physicians match the best immunotherapy drugs to an individual patient. Moffitt’s Jamie Teer and seasoned biotech executive Kevin Krenitsky are also part of the company’s management team.
The BioPitch Competition is a chance for seed- and early-stage life science firms to get their products and services in front of a panel of investors. More than 40 companies applied, according to the release, with just 15 selected to present to investors during closed-door sessions. Those 15 were then whittled down to four finalists, who presented in open session to investors at the conference, with Interpares Biomedicine declared the winner.
“Cancer treatment is moving away from a one-size-fits-all to a more personalized approach,” McLeod states in the release. “Interpares aims to create tools physicians can use to match the best therapy or drug to a patient based on their cancer and genetic makeup. This ensures a patient has the maximum benefit with limited toxicity.”
Interpares has focused on providing personalized medicine solutions for cancer immunotherapy. This includes a number of diagnostic, prognostic, predictive and therapeutic strategies to better understand a patient’s likelihood of both benefit and risk from the distinct types of immunotherapy.
Members of the BioFlorida network include emerging and established life science companies, universities, research institutions, hospitals, medical centers, incubators, economic development agencies, investors and service providers.