Ariceum Therapeutics has opened a new lab that will enable it to internally develop radiopharmaceuticals for diagnostic imaging and cancer therapy.

Ariceum Therapeutics opens new lab for next-generation radiopharmaceutical development

March 12, 2024
by John R. Fischer, Senior Reporter
Private clinical-stage biotech company Ariceum Therapeutics has opened a new laboratory at its Berlin headquarters equipped with new resources to streamline research and development of next-generation isotopes used in diagnostic PET and SPECT imaging as well as alpha and beta therapy radioisotopes, for neuroendocrine and other hard-to-treat cancers.

Started in 2021, the company holds the rights to manufacture 177Lu-satoreotide tetraxetan, a radiopharmaceutical intended to be used as a theranostic pair that targets the somatostatin type 2 (SSTR2) receptor overexpressed in neuroendocrine tumors. The company is also developing an iodine-radiolabeled PARP-inhibitor (rPARPi), ATT001, which is scheduled to enter clinical development in 2024.

Until now, the company has relied on external radio pharma facilities for the development of its radiopharmaceuticals. The new laboratory space is more than 200 square meters and has room for another 60 square meters of changing lock and storage space. In it, Ariceum will be able to perform on-site processes, methods, validation, and formulation development as well as preliminary stability analysis of its radiolabeled compounds.

It will initially be used for radiochemistry and in vitro activities and includes a gamma counter to measure radioactivity in organs. Non-clinical pharmacology studies will also be performed for detailed characterization of its first-in-class development candidates, and the lab will act as a state-of-the-art research hub to advance R&D collaborations and identify exciting new pipeline candidates.

"The lab will help accelerate timelines of all projects at the discovery and preclinical stages. With in-house labeling capacity, Ariceum will have the ability to screen and optimize more peptides at a faster pace. Ariceum will conduct non-clinical pharmacology studies such as binding activity, cytotoxicity tests, and ex-vivo analysis of organs in the new laboratory," Serge Sagodira, chief business officer at Ariceum Therapeutics, told HCB News.

Ariceum acquired all rights to satoreotide from French biopharmaceutical business Ipsen, which remains a shareholder in the company, and ATT001 through its acquisition of Theragnostics, a private British biopharmaceutical manufacturer, in June 2023. The company is based in Germany and has locations in Switzerland, Australia, the U.K., and the U.S. Its specialist investors include EQT Life Sciences (formerly LSP), HealthCap, Pureos Bioventures, Andera Partners, and Earlybird Venture Capital.

Among the therapies it is developing are 177Lu-satoreotide tetraxetan for neuroendocrine tumors, small cell lung cancer, Merkel Cell Carcinoma, and solid tumors; ATT001, which is due to begin Phase I development for the treatment of glioblastoma; ATD001, a fluorine-18 radiolabeled rPARPi currently in Phase I clinical trials at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center for head and neck cancer; and ATT002 as an alpha and beta therapy.

Its diagnostics pipeline includes NEPHROSCAN, a single-dose kit for the preparation of technetium-99m (Tc-99m) Succimer for renal parenchymal disorders; androgen deprivation therapy for prostate cancer; 68Ga-satoreotide trizoxetan for solid tumors; ATD001 for solid tumors; satoreotide tetraxetan for neuroblastomas.

Ariceum has expanded and established its workforce ahead of the lab opening and will recruit additional employees as the company grows. While most early-stage R&D activities will be performed in-house, Ariceum will continue to use external partners for certain aspects of its research and development.