NRC and Augurex collaborate to improve treatments for rheumatoid arthritis

The National Research Council of Canada (NRC) and Augurex Life Sciences Corp. are proud to announce a collaborative agreement to develop new treatments for rheumatoid arthritis through personalized medicine.

By combining their research and development expertise, NRC and Augurex will generate and characterize antibodies with therapeutic benefits in preclinical models of rheumatoid arthritis. The collaboration will ensure that only those likely to benefit from the antibody treatment receive it – an approach known as personalized medicine. This is done by testing the antibody’s response to specific biomarkers in arthritis. If the biomarker is identified in an individual, then the antibody may be used to treat them.

Quick Facts

  • Augurex’s lead technology is a protein biomarker of arthritis, called 14-3-3eta. A simple blood test with a positive result for the biomarker indicates a 5 to 50 times greater likelihood of the patient having rheumatoid arthritis.
  • This protein is present in all of us, but it is normally inside the cells. In rheumatoid arthritis, 14-3-3eta gets outside of cells with harmful effects.
  • NRC has developed unique capabilities in antibody generation and functional assays to support early validation of the diagnostic and therapeutic potential of lead antibody candidates.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis is a particularly debilitative autoimmune form of arthritis that affects about 1% of the Canadian population (about 300,000 Canadians).
  • Rheumatoid arthritis most often appears between the ages of 25 and 50 and it affects women three times more often than men.


“This collaboration with Augurex confirms NRC’s complementary role in personalized medicine and ability to provide its partners with innovative R&D solutions and assets to impact their competitiveness nationally and globally while improving the quality of life for Canadians.”
– Dr. Roman Szumski, Vice-President of Life Sciences at the National Research Council of Canada

“The novelty of the approach that we are embarking on with NRC is that you can determine whether the drug is effectively clearing the harmful protein by measuring the remaining protein levels in blood. You can then modify the dosing schedule to completely remove the protein over time.”
– Dr. Anthony Marotta, Chief Scientific Officer, Augurex Life Sciences Corp.


Article from NRC