Focus on Oncology
Although Argos’ platform technology can be applied to the treatment
of a broad range of disease, our initial focus is on cancer. Argos’ therapeutic
vaccines are applicable to nearly all cancers, including liquid tumors,
and to the majority of new cancer patients.
Cancer, accounting for one in every four deaths, is the second leading
cause of mortality in the United States, exceeded only by heart disease.
The National Cancer Institute estimates the overall annual costs for
cancer in the U.S. at over $143 billion, including $41 billion for direct
The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates more than 10 million people
are diagnosed with cancer each year, and that there will be 15 million
new cases every year by 2020. Annually, cancer causes 6 million deaths - or
12 percent of deaths worldwide.
The Argos personalized vaccine, through its ability to provide long-term,
high safety profile treatment of disease and individual disease mutations,
would enable a more effective and more tolerable treatment option to
a large percentage of patients around the globe. The company believes
that the market for therapeutic vaccines to treat cancers has multi-billion
dollar revenue potential.
Other Opportunities: Unmet Medical Needs
Beyond cancer, Argos’ patented RNA-based vaccine
technology offers potential to create immunotherapies for those chronic
infectious diseases most resistant to current therapies. The resultant
infections, such as human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and hepatitis
C (HCV), represent some of the largest and most significant areas of
unmet medical need.
Through our proprietary knowledge of dendritic cell behavior,
Argos has recognized potential applications for other disease areas.
We are currently developing a monoclonal antibody-based therapy for SLE
(lupus), a disease that affects as many as 1.5 to 2 million Americans,
according to The Lupus Foundation of America, and for which there is
no cure. In the US, there have been no new drugs approved by the FDA
for the treatment of lupus in more than 40 years and current drug therapies,
such as corticosteroids, have significant side effects and other drawbacks.