On a global scale, cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of death. CVD is the general term for disorders related to heart and blood vessels, including heart failure (HF) where the heart is unable to pump properly and consequently unable to maintain sufficient blood flow throughout the body. CVDs involve a high risk to result in sudden cardiac death. To avoid such outcome, it is important to detect and treat CVDs as early as possible. The Norwegian biotech company CardiNor AS was established in 2015 to commercialise secretoneurin (SN), a new cardiac biomarker capable of predicting mortality in many CVD patient cohorts. The unique prognostic information that SN provides could, for the first time, allow risk stratification and personalised treatments in HF. In turn, this can one day give rise to a more informed balance between drug side effects and patient risks. Altogether, SN has the potential to yield valuable opportunities for patients as well as society.
In June 2021, CardiNor AS secured 1.15M EUR in grant from the Innovation Project for the Industrial Sector (Innovasjonsprosjekt i Næringslivet, IPN) funding programme. IPN is organised by the Research Council of Norway (Forskningsrådet) to encourage companies to invest more in R&D activities that can promote innovation and thereby improve opportunities for sustainable economic growth as well as enhanced competitiveness. Hence, IPN is a funding opportunity for company-driven projects that can incorporate extensive R&D activities. CardiNor AS applied for IPN funding to investigate how HF treatments should be adjusted based on SN levels as well as to develop sensitive and easy to use tests for measuring SN in blood. More precisely, the project objectives involve (1) to generate substantial clinical evidence to support clinical guidance of how drugs prescribed for HF should be up-titrated per SN risk level to minimise risks, so all HF patients receive the best possible therapy over time, and (2) to obtain a stable, reproducible and easily manufacturable assay that can be used as the core building block for a novel SN test in high-sensitivity immunochemical Core Lab analysers of major IVD brands. On behalf of CardiNor AS, Innovayt coordinated and prepared this grant application.
CardiNor AS is a recurrent Innovayt client. For instance, in 2017, Innovayt assisted CardiNor AS on a soft funding proposal for the Eurostars programme, organised by Eureka, that resulted in a 663k EUR grant.
“We have been very pleased with the support and collaboration with Innovayt, which has been instrumental in securing funded applications. I am especially impressed with their ability to acquire the in-depth knowledge of our company and technologies needed to transferring it to successful applications” says Dag Christiansen, CEO at CardiNor AS.