October 22, 2016 9:51 AM ET

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Company Overview of Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation

Company Overview

Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation is a nonprofit biomedical research foundation that focuses on drug development for human disease, focusing on such critical research areas as heart disease, cancer, lupus, and Alzheimer’s disease. The institution was founded in 1946 and is based in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

825 N.E. 13th Street

Oklahoma City, OK 73104

United States

Founded in 1946





Key Executives for Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation

Vice President of Development
Vice President of Human Relations
Compensation as of Fiscal Year 2016.

Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation Key Developments

GtreeBNT Co., Ltd. Enters into an Agreement with the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation to Acquire the Rights to OKN-007

GtreeBNT Co. Ltd., has entered into an agreement with the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation (OMRF) to acquire the rights to OKN-007, a new investigational drug for the treatment of glioblastoma, a deadly form of brain cancer. Under a new company, Oblato Inc., GtreeBNT will assume exclusive rights to the compound, which was developed by OMRF researchers Rheal Towner, Ph.D., and Robert Floyd, Ph.D. OKN-007 has been evaluated as a novel therapeutic that protects nerves and reduces both necrosis and glioblastoma cell proliferation by eliminating reactive oxygen species, a known cause of cancer. In studies at OMRF, the drug reduced tumor size and increased lifespan in animal models of glioblastoma. An estimated 12,000 Americans are diagnosed with glioblastoma each year. OKN-007 has undergone phase I-B clinical testing at the University of Oklahoma's Stephenson Cancer Center, where physicians assessed its safety in patients suffering from glioblastoma. Oblato will initiate additional trials to study the efficacy and safety of this investigational drug in larger patient populations. At this time, OKN-007 is administered as an infusion. This agreement will provide the resources to expand the size of the patient cohort and to eventually develop an oral form of the drug.

OMRF and Biogen Enter Autoimmune Disease Collaboration

OMRF and Biogen have formed a research collaboration. Under the new agreement, Biogen researchers will work with Kathy Sivils, a member of OMRF's Arthritis and Clinical Immunology Research Program, in an effort to develop biomarkers that could predict if patients suffering from the autoimmune disease Sjogren's syndrome might benefit from new approaches of treatment that are being developed by Biogen. The project is a part of a personalised medicine initiative where advance testing is utilized to identify the patients most likely to respond to specific treatments. Using resources and data developed in Sivils' lab at OMRF, the company hopes identify patients likely to respond to a particular course of treatment for Sjogren's. In Sjogren's syndrome, the body's immune system mistakenly attacks its moisture-producing glands, resulting in dry eyes, dry mouth, fatigue and joint pain. According to the Sjogren's Syndrome Foundation, the illness affects an estimated 4 million Americans. The disease's symptoms often mimic those of other autoimmune diseases like lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia or multiple sclerosis, making it difficult to diagnose. Drops and preparations for dry eyes and mouth can help temporarily, but immunosuppressive medications may be necessary to manage internal organ issues or severe flares. In the lab, Sivils and her colleague Darise Farris, Ph.D., are looking for biomarkers--substances that indicate the presence of disease--in Sjogren's patients that might identify how well each person will respond to a specific drug. Sivils and Biogen researchers are analyzing patient samples to try to pinpoint which biomarkers make them good candidates for specific medications before they actually begin treatment. Sivils was the first researcher to launch a large-scale, genome-wide association study of patients with Sjogren's syndrome. In 2013, led an international coalition of researchers that identified six new genes related to the illness. At OMRF, Sivils has built a unique collection of biological samples gathered from patients in the foundation's Sjogren's research clinic. The samples give Sivils and her collaborators access to biological materials that are essential to developing new ways to diagnose and treat the disease. Sivils hopes the collaboration with Biogen will create a companion diagnostic that will help physicians deliver the most effective treatment to individual patients.

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