(BERKELEY, Calif.) — NEWS: Flightpath Biosciences, a life sciences company, launched today claiming a spot in Illumina Accelerator’s second global class to develop diagnostics and microbiome-targeted therapeutics to treat rare pathogen-driven diseases. The company has operated in stealth since its founding in mid-2019 and has built a pipeline of drug candidates for a wide range of diseases, starting with acute and Persistent Lyme Disease (PLD).
* Flightpath is led by an experienced team eager to execute deep data discovery and drive a pipeline of narrow-spectrum, targeted therapeutics into the clinic
* Company aims to combine deep genomic sequencing, metabolomics and immune-cell profiling with next generation machine-learning approaches to solve multiple pathogen-driven diseases and syndromes
* Company seeks to expand team to support operational acceleration and development efforts
“Today, more than ever, we understand that pathogen-driven epidemics like Lyme disease need to be more easily and accurately diagnosed and more specifically treated with narrow-spectrum, targeted therapies to avoid the microbiome damage that occurs with broad-spectrum antibiotics,” said Matt Tindall, Flightpath Co-founder and CEO.
Of the 476K patients diagnosed with acute Lyme disease each year in the U.S., most are treated with broad-spectrum antibiotics, but 10 to 20% endure debilitating symptoms such as fatigue, neurological complications, and myalgias after treatment, a condition known as Persistent Lyme disease (PLD). The etiology of PLD is not understood, and objective diagnostic tools are lacking.
Interestingly, PLD symptoms overlap several diseases in which patients exhibit alterations in their microbiome. In a recent study, published in mBio (September 2020), Lewis et al determined that microbiome sequencing data alone were indicative of late-stage Lyme disease, which presents a potential, novel diagnostic tool for PLD.
The authors found that patients with post-treatment Lyme disease syndrome, a subset of PLD, had a distinct microbiome signature, allowing for an accurate classification of over 80% of analyzed cases. Importantly, this signature supports the validity of PLD and is the first potential biological diagnostic tool for the disease.
“Our ability to analyze the microbiome, transcriptome and metabolome and identify disease signatures will give us new tools to unlock the potential of microbiome-based medicines in rare infectious diseases and potentially pathogen-driven cancers,” said Mark de Souza, Flightpath Co-founder and Executive Chairman. “We’re excited to get to work with the Illumina team and our world-class lab and academic partners to tackle this disease area with fresh perspectives, novel approaches and new data.”
About Flightpath Biosciences
Flightpath Biosciences is developing microbiome-targeted therapeutics and advanced biomarker-based diagnostics for the treatment of infectious diseases. Flightpath’s mission is to transform patient’s lives with medicines developed using a multidisciplinary approach to human and pathogen biology.
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Related link: https://flightpath.bio/
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