IXICO Plc (LON:IXI), the digital tech company focussed on neuroscience, has further expanded its pilot of the Assessa progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML) platform, which includes US biotech giant Biogen Inc (NASDAQ:BIIB).
The Assessa PML platform, which is being trialled in five EU countries, is designed to facilitate the remote transfer, management and storage of MRI scans to help doctors detect PML, which is a rare and potentially fatal disease that affects people living with multiple sclerosis.
The pilot, which includes platform development and on-boarding of clinical sites, has now been expanded to include pharmacovigilance reporting – monitoring the effects of medical drugs to help identify and evaluate previously unreported adverse reactions.
Ixico and its partners stand to be paid around £1.5mln to cover the costs of the project, with £0.8mln already being paid out.
Subject to the timing of the work being performed, the AIM-quoted group said the fees support its confidence in delivering revenue growth in the current financial year (to end September).
“We are delighted to announce the expansion of this pilot involving clinical experts in specialist MS centres and Biogen,” said chief executive Giulio Cerroni.
“The Assessa PML digital platform is intended to provide technology and speciality services to physicians involved in delivering care to people living with MS.”
IXICO is developing neuroscience products and it is working with the companies it reckons will be the early adopters of its technology – big pharmaceutical companies.
Why are the multi-national drug giants interested in companion products and willing to shell out for them? Simple - very soon these businesses may be paid on results.
The company’s Biogen collaboration is currently in its infancy, but it provides proof positive that IXICO’s strategy has legs.
The plan is not simply to support one company (Biogen), but to provide a solution across a host of drugs to a number of companies.
Expansion on the cards
IXICO aim is to leverage its long-standing expertise in brain scanning and its more recent expansion into collecting data directly from patients, such as with wearable smart watches.
As well as MS, its devices could be deployed to monitor drugs for other neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Huntingdon’s and Parkinson’s disease.