BMS & Boston Medical Center announce research collaboration

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BMS & Boston Medical Center enter research collaboration to investigate markers of immuno-oncology response and resistance

Bristol-Myers Squibb Company and Boston Medical Center, a private, not-for-profit, academic medical center, has announced a multi-year joint research study to identify and analyse potential sensitivity and resistance markers in patients treated with standard-of-care checkpoint inhibitors.

The comprehensive, multi-dimensional study will place an emphasis on uncovering mechanisms associated with lack of response to Immuno-Oncology (I-O) therapies, with the ultimate goal of identifying prognostic and potentially predictive I-O biomarkers in a variety of cancers.

Saurabh Saha, M.D., Ph.D., senior vice president and global head of translational medicine, Bristol-Myers Squibb said, “Our newly opened R&D site in Kendall Square is focused on better understanding, and ultimately overcoming, the challenge of I-O resistance. We are thrilled to establish our first partnership since the site opened with our new neighbor, Boston Medical Center, with the goal of uncovering new insights into the biology of cancer and how it evolves with exposure to I-O intervention. The information we glean from this collaboration will ultimately inform the development of novel therapeutic strategies to improve response rates and outcomes for patients.”

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Through the study between BMS & Boston Medical Center, researchers will explore the role of tissue and circulating biomarkers on treatment sensitivity and resistance. In addition, scientists will investigate the role of the microbiome as a potential predictive biomarker in patients receiving treatment with immune checkpoint inhibitors.

Matthew Kulke, M.D., chief of hematology/oncology at Boston Medical Center said, “Boston Medical Center serves a diverse patient population, with 70 percent of our patients coming from underserved communities. These patients are sorely underrepresented in current research studies. We look forward to partnering with Bristol-Myers Squibb on this study to identify and assess biomarkers across a diverse patient population, providing us with a deeper and more comprehensive understanding of I-O resistance.”

BMS & Boston Medical Center will jointly conduct the research throughout the duration of the study, after which Bristol-Myers Squibb and Boston Medical Center may collaborate to publish results.

Bristol-Myers Squibb opened its Cambridge R&D site, located in Kendall Square, on November 26, 2018.