At Avenna we translate and commercialise most promising technologies for early detection and treatment personalisation for Inflammatory Diseases. This is to make precision medicine approach for IDs affordable and scalable.
We are currently working in collaboration with our sister company Ludger, to translate and commercialise of our first technology called GlyHealth.
GlyHealth is our family of prognostic and predictive blood biomarkers of IDs. This unique method to analyse blood being developed to support proactive, precision medicine (PM) approaches to early detection, prevention, and treatment of chronic immune function disorders.
The tests work by analysing specific glycomics patterns of immune system glycoproteins in small samples of blood. Glycomics involves quantitative measurements of patterns of glycans. Glycans are highly-complex, typically branched, information-rich molecules which, in immune system glycoproteins, occur as post-translational additions to the protein backbone, often at multiple attachment sites. They are involved in wide range of biological processes, as it regulates the interaction of the molecules, and cells they are attached to, with surrounding environment. As such, glycans are involved in virtually every biological process in human body, from fertilization and embryogenesis, through cell proliferation, differentiation and development, to immunity and aging.
The glycans greatly diversify not only the structures of the proteins but also their functions, tuning the functions of immune system proteins. For example, the glycans of the Fc regions of serum IgG alter Fc effector functions including ADCC and CDC. In this way, glycans tune immune protein functions, just as adverbs tune verbs in human language.
Unlike conventional inflammation markers such as hs-CRP and IL-6, GlyHealth biomarkers measure chronic inflammation reliably, without interference from acute inflammation. This robustness arises from the relatively long circulatory half-lives of immune system glycoforms. These are replaced over much longer time-scales (typically eight to twelve weeks), compared acute inflammation markers.
Our focus is on developing GlyHealth biomarkers for high-burden chronic-IDs that are difficult to detect and track, particularly at early stages of disease development. Our main disease targets for the next five years are inflammatory conditions affecting the gut, joints, skin, brain, and hormonal regulation. These conditions all involve various forms of degradation in immune function. We term the underlying degeneration mechanisms as immunofrailty (IF) pathways. IF pathways drive age-related immunosenescence, which relates to application of GlyHealth biomarkers in our programes on self-care to address unhealthy ageing. We are also using GlyHealth to investigate the relationship between IF pathways and differences in health outcomes from COVID-19 between different ethnic groups.