Discover the secret life of proteins – simultaneously visualize two proteins in a free and complex state
Ever wish there were a way to take a snapshot of two proteins as they interact or remain unbound? Now, the door is open to study protein interplay and functional states while keeping the structural integrity of cells. Our latest innovation, Naveni™TriFlex Cell, uncovers protein complex formation and disassembly in response to different stimuli in situ. This revolutionary proximity-based technology concurrently visualizes two proteins in a free and complex state, within any cell compartment. Naveni™TriFlex Cell enables you to shed light on the hidden lives of proteins.
Navinci Diagnostics AB announces the launch of the first commercial assay to detect PD1/PD-L1 interaction in tissue samples.
Navinci Diagnostics AB, a Swedish life science company developing innovative tools for spatial proteomics research, today announces the release of the first commercially available assay to detect the immune checkpoint PD1/PD-L1 in FFPE samples.
Activation of Programmed Death protein 1 (PD1) is an essential step in the signaling pathway controlling T-cell exhaustion. This mechanism allows tumor cells to evade the immune system in many cancer patients. To activate T-cell exhaustion, the PD1 protein requires interaction with programmed death protein ligand 1 (PD-L1) as well as phosphorylation 4,5. However, neither interaction between PD1 and PD-L1 nor the phosphorylation of PD1 is well studied in tissue, mainly due to a lack of specific methods.
PD1/PD-L1 signaling has proven significant in cancer progression, and immune checkpoint inhibitors targeting PD1/PD-L1 have emerged as essential therapies for cancer patients.1 But despite the success, many patients do not benefit from these therapies, and predictive biomarkers improving patient stratification are needed.1-3
Today, the leading technology used to determine whether a patient is likely to benefit from PD1/PD-L1 immunotherapy is PD-L1 immunohistochemistry (IHC). However, existing PD-L1 assays are insufficiently standardized, and the PD-L1 positivity of patient samples doesn’t directly correlate with activation of the inhibitory pathway or patient response to immune checkpoint inhibitors. 3 PD1/PD-L1 interaction has predictive value for patient prognosis and survival. Still, until now, the possibilities to detect it in tissue samples have been very limited3.
The new Naveni PD1/PD-L1 interaction assay detects the immune checkpoint interaction between PD1 and PD-L1 in fixed tissue sections. In addition, Navinci also releases an assay to show PD1 activation by detection of phosphorylated PD1. The assays are easy-to-use with all reagents included and require only standard laboratory and microscope equipment.
“I am very proud of our R&D team who have developed this unique assay to meet needs in the immuno-oncology research and drug development field. With this tool, scientists can better understand the mechanism of immune response to tumors and ultimately design better drugs to treat patients. This release marks the beginning of our mission to build a large portfolio of assays to support the immuno-oncology research field” – Robert Gunnarsson, CEO of Navinci Diagnostics AB.
- Pu Y, Ji Q. Tumor-Associated Macrophages Regulate PD-1/PD-L1 Immunosuppression. Front Immunol. 2022 May 3;13:874589.
- Robert C, A decade of immune-checkpoint inhibitors in cancer therapy. Nat Commun. 2020; 11: 3801
- Sánchez-Magraner L, et al. High PD-1/PD-L1 Checkpoint Interaction Infers Tumor Selection and Therapeutic Sensitivity to Anti-PD-1/PD-L1 Treatment. Cancer Res. 2020 Oct 1;80(19):4244-4257
- Patsoukis N, et al. Revisiting the PD-1 pathway. Sci Adv 2020 Sep 18;6(38)
- Patsoukis N, et al. Interaction of SHP-2 SH2 domains with PD-1 ITSM induces PD-1 dimerization and SHP-2 activation. Commun Biol. 2020 Mar 17;3(1):128.
Here to make a difference – the first PD1/PD-L1 interaction assay
Immune checkpoint inhibitors have revolutionized cancer immunotherapy, and more than 3000 anti-PD1/PD-L1 therapies are currently in clinical trials. The leading technology used to determine whether a patient is likely to benefit from PD1/PD-L1 immunotherapy is PD-L1 immunohistochemistry. However, this test doesn’t reveal whether the interaction between PD1 and PD-L1 actually occurs, and correlates poorly with patient response to treatment.
PD1/PD-L1 interaction has predictive value for patient prognosis and survival, but up until now, the possibilities to detect it in tissue samples have been very limited.
Here is how our newly developed in situ assay makes a difference:
Naveni PD1/PD-L1 is a Proximity Ligation Assay for the specific detection of the PD1/PD-L1 interaction in situ. The assay can be performed on FFPE and fresh frozen tissue samples. The assay has been verified in several different human FFPE tissues, such as Hodgkin’s lymphoma, Tonsil, Lung acinar adenocarcinoma, Lung squamous cell carcinoma, Malignant Melanoma, Colon adenocarcinoma, and Pancreatic ductal carcinoma.
Low signal and multiple non-specific bands in your Western Blot? Learn how the authors of a recently published paper surpassed the problems and created a sensitive and specific Western Blot with Naveni™ Proximity Ligation Technology.
Dr. Athanasios Alexandris is a postdoc at the department of Pathology at Johns Hopkins in the lab of Professor Vassilis E. Koliatsos. They explore the fundamental mechanisms of neural responses to traumatic and degenerative signals, and are especially interested in the role of injury-related stress MAPK cascades, NAD+ metabolism, SARM1 signaling and their convergence on Wallerian degeneration.
Wallerian degeneration, a neurodegenerative process activated when nerves are injured and in several disease states, is driven by the degradation of the NAD+ synthesizing enzyme NMNAT2. In the published article Protective effects of NAMPT or MAPK inhibitors and NaR on Wallerian degeneration of mammalian axons, the authors explored pharmacological agents to modulate the pathways of NAD+ metabolism and their impact on axonal fragmentation. As part of the study, they wanted to detect NMNAT2 in axonal extracts by regular Western blot (WB) but were unable due to its very low expression and antibody specificity. For this reason, they chose to use the NaveniFlex MR 100 Proximity Ligation Assay from Navinci to amplify the detection signal and increase the specificity.
NaveniFlex is commonly used to study protein expression and protein-protein interactions in situ in cell and tissue staining. Proximity Ligation Assay has several benefits, such as increased sensitivity and specificity that can also be applied in other immune assay applications such as Western Blot. Western blotting with Proximity Ligation has been described in the literature (Mol Cell Proteomics. 2011 Nov; 10(11)), but it is not widely spread. We contacted the first author Athanasios Alexandris to understand more about their choice of this innovative application.
How come you thought about using proximity ligation assay for western blot application?
For our study, we wanted to detect and analyze a low abundance protein (NMNAT2) in very small amounts of sample (axon extracts) with WB. However, we found that most antibodies for our target protein produced low or no signal at the expected molecular weight and multiple non-specific bands that were stronger. In addition, due to the nature of the samples, we were not able to increase the amount of material used for WB. Therefore we thought that a way to surpass these challenges would be to combine WB with the same proximity ligation assay technology that is used for tissue staining. Proximity ligation assay can achieve higher specificity as signal is conditional on the binding of two different antibodies (in this case for the same target), and higher sensitivity as the signal is greatly amplified with amplification of the circularized DNA sequence. In practical terms this meant that with proximity ligation assay -WB we were able to eliminate all non-specific bands, and detect a specific band corresponding to our target protein and with great sensitivity that was not possible with traditional methods.
For your specific study of analyzing NMNAT2 in axonal extracts, how did the NaveniFlex kit add value to you and the specific study?
By improving the specificity and sensitivity of our method we were able to assess changes in the expression of our target protein which wouldn’t be practically possible otherwise.
Did you have any previous experience with proximity ligation assay/technology?
We did not have any prior experience.
So how did you hear about Navinci?
We found Navinci after an internet and literature search for sensitive proximity ligation assay technologies that would be suitable for our application. The Navinci kit seemed to offer improved efficiency of signal generation compared to prior technologies.
Will you use proximity ligation assay/NaveniFlex for other WB studies?
Yes! We have already tested this successfully with other challenging proteins.
What is your opinion about Navinci customer support? Anything we can do better?
The help and technical support from Navinci were great. As we were trying this method for the first time, the scientists of Navinci were happy to discuss our needs and offer guidance as well as custom detection reagents that are optimized for WB imaging (i.e. a near-infra red fluorophore instead of Atto488, TEX615, and Atto647N which are used in immunohistochemistry)
Navinci Diagnostics AB announces closing of SEK 90M Series A financing, led by Segulah Medical Acceleration with support from existing shareholders
Navinci Diagnostics AB, a Swedish life science company developing innovative tools for spatial proteomics research, announces the closing of a SEK 90 million financing round. The round was led by Segulah Medical Acceleration (”SMA”), a Scandinavia-based life science-focused investment company, together with existing shareholders, including Landegren Gene Technology AB, Nexttobe AB, and Beijer Ventures AB.
Proteins exert the majority of their physiological functions in cells and tissues by undergoing modifications and forming dynamic complexes – effects that cannot be explored by genomics, transcriptomics or conventional immunostaining methods. Navinci advances spatial proteomics by launching high-performance assay kits, based on proprietary in situ Proximity Ligation Assay technology for the analysis of proteins, as well as their interactions and modifications. The technology offer a deeper understanding of proteins and their activity states in normal and diseased cells and tissues, in both academic and industrial research. In particular, Navinci’s technology is an essential tool for detecting immune checkpoints, improving patient stratification and monitoring treatment effects in pharmaceutical research.
Navinci will soon launch the first commercially available assay to accurately detect interaction between the programmed cell death protein 1 (PD1) and PD1-ligand (PD-L1) checkpoint in tissue samples. This is the first step in building a complete portfolio of assays for immuno-oncology research and drug development. Immune checkpoint inhibitors have provided a substantial breakthrough in cancer immunotherapy, and there are more than 3000 anti-PD1/PD-L1 therapies currently in clinical trials. The main technology currently used to determine whether a patient is likely to benefit from PD1/PD-L1 immunotherapy is PD- L1 immunohistochemistry. However, this test fails to reveal PD1/PD-L1 interactions and has been shown to correlate poorly with patient response to treatment.
Navinci’s technology can enhance understanding of how drugs exert their effects, with the potential to improve clinical trial outcomes and achieve more effective treatments. Navinci also offers flexible solutions (NaveniTMFlex) which allow scientists to study any protein or protein interaction in tissue or cell samples, with greater accuracy than conventional immunofluorescence or immunohistochemistry.
There is a significant unmet need for diagnostic immuno-oncological methods that can convey important clinical information; hence, the global market potential is large and growing rapidly. With the recent financing, Navinci will accelerate international commercialization and partner with pharma companies, as well as companies with complementary technologies, to offer complete solutions for its customers. Navinci strives to build the largest and most useful portfolio of assays to study protein interplay in immuno-oncology, while also expanding into other research areas.
“I am incredibly excited about what we have accomplished so far, the journey Navinci is now on, and the path we have set for ourselves. I’m proud of the confidence in our technology and in our team that is shown by existing and new owners. With the inclusion of SMA among Navinci’s shareholders, we gain financial resources to realize our ambitious vision of becoming a leader in spatial proteomics. Equally important, we join forces with one of the most vital investors in Scandinavia and gain access to their excellent life science network in Europe and the USA. Our leadership team and the board of directors share SMA ́s vision and core values, and we complement each other in a very positive way. We will now begin expanding our Sales & Marketing and R&D teams with talented and ambitious co-workers who resonate with our company values. Open positions will be announced shortly.” – Robert Gunnarsson, CEO of Navinci Diagnostics AB.
“Segulah Medical Acceleration is pleased to be leading Navinci’s SEK 90 million Series A financing. Navinci, through its Naveni Proximity Ligation technology, is uniquely positioned to be a core part of the spatial biology revolution as it accelerates. The track record of Ulf Landegren and his colleagues – scientific founders of Navinci as well as other successful companies, including Olink Proteomics and Q-Linea – is something that SMA has deep and longstanding admiration for. Together with the Navinci management team, we look forward to providing the resources and guidance to enable the next few steps on what we think will be a long and successful commercial journey.” – Roger Gunnarsson, Managing Partner at SMA.
For questions, please contact Robert Gunnarsson
Phone: +46 (0) 702 921 985
Navinci (formerly known as Olink Bioscience) is a Swedish life science company that develops and markets in situ proximity ligation assays to detect proteins, their interactions, and modifications in tissue and cell samples, with initial focus on immuno-oncology research and drug development. The technology provides an essential tool for studying spatial biology with high specificity and directly reveal responses to disease and drug treatment in tissue microenvironments.
Segulah Medical Acceleration (“SMA”) is a Scandinavia-based investment company focusing on innovative medical technology companies with global potential. SMA’s objective is to be an active partner and help its portfolio companies accelerate growth and internationalization and reach commercial proof of concept. SMA’s geographic investment remit is focused on Scandinavia and other Western European countries. The areas within Medtech that SMA prioritizes include medical devices and consumables, diagnostics, life science tools, and digital technologies. SMA has more than SEK 1.25 billion (€ 125m equivalent) in investable funds.
New publication out!
Wåhlén et al. have just published the article: Differential impact of lipid raft depletion on platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF)-induced ERK1/2 MAP-kinase, SRC and AKT signaling – ScienceDirect
In the study, they analyzed the co-localization of PDGFR-β and GRB2, PI3K or clathrin, using our Naveni Proximity Ligation Technology. Citation: “For this purpose, NaveniFlex MR (Navinci Diagnostics) was used, which is a more efficient version of in situ PLA”
In the article, they conclude that the different effects of lipid raft disruption on PDGFR-β signaling may provide an opportunity for selective therapeutic targeting of tumor cells.
Could this data support the possibility that cholesterol-lowering drugs, such as statins may impede tumor growth?
LAUNCH NEWS- Introducing NaveniBright!!
Navinci is taking the next step to meet the needs of the pathology field. NaveniBright is a new product line with chromogenic readout. The in situ kits are based on our NaveniTM Proximity Ligation Technology and significantly enhance the chromogenic signal, providing you with stronger and more accurate staining. The assay gives you detailed visualization of the protein target with intact cell morphology.
NaveniBright™ enables you to:
- Detect proteins, protein-protein interactions, and post-translational modifications
- Study very low abundant protein targets
- Visualize the protein target with intact cell/tissue morphology
- Save precious antibodies
Introducing Naveni target-specific assays for phosphorylated RTK’s: EGFR, HER2, PDGFR-beta, MET
We are now launching target-specific Naveni in situ proximity ligation assays for phosphorylated receptor tyrosine kinases EGFR, HER2, PDGFR-beta and MET. The assays are based on dual epitope recognition by two primary Navenibodies, that generate an amplified signal when bound in close proximity. This ensures detection of phosphorylated proteins with very high sensitivity and specificity. The assays are adapted to standard histological workflows and can be run without the need for additional equipment. Read more about the products: Naveni pTyr EGFR Naveni pTyr HER2, Naveni pTyr PDGFR-beta, Naveni pTyr MET
The Naveni in situ Proximity Ligation Assay technique will be provided by the SciLifeLab unit Affinity Proteomics Uppsala
Navinci Diagnostics AB and Science for Life Laboratory, SciLifeLab, have entered a collaboration where the Naveni in situ Proximity Ligation Assay technique will be provided by the SciLifeLab unit Affinity Proteomics Uppsala
”We are delighted to partner with SciLifeLab and the Affinity Proteomics unit in Uppsala, as this allows the NaveniTM in situ proximity ligation assay technology to support the mission of SciLifeLab to enable life science research in Sweden to provide access to the latest key technologies. This collaboration will significantly benefit our academic customers that need help with assay development or sample analysis to support their research on protein interactions or signaling pathways. This is a natural continuation of the long-lasting close collaboration between Uppsala University, SciLifeLab, and Navinci.”
Robert Gunnarsson, CEO Navinci Diagnostics AB
”By implementing Navinci’s innovative products, we will be able to further strengthen our offering of in situ proximity ligation assay services by highly sensitive and reproducible assays. We are happy to continue a local and close relationship with companies with a legacy from Uppsala University.”
Mikael Åberg, Head of Affinity Proteomics Uppsala, SciLifeLab.
Founded upon the research by Ulf Landegren and colleagues at Uppsala University, Navinci (formerly known as Olink Bioscience) is a Swedish life science company that develops and markets in situ proximity ligation assays to monitor proteins, their interactions, and modifications. The technology provides an essential tool for spatial biology and reveals the responses to disease and drug treatment directly in the tissue microenvironment.
SciLifeLab leverages the unique strengths of individual researchers across Sweden into a focused resource for the life science community. SciLifeLab provides access for thousands of researchers to the cutting-edge instrumentation and deep scientific expertise necessary to be internationally competitive in bioscience research. This infrastructure is supported and developed by our research community, including internationally recognized experts in life science and technology. The units and expertise create a unique environment for health and environmental research at the highest level. SciLifeLab started in 2010 as a joint effort between four universities: Karolinska Institutet, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm University, and Uppsala University. Today, they support research activities at all major Swedish universities.
Navinci partners with Oncolab GmbH, Austria, to supply reagents to their P53 Prions – A novel biomarker test for circulating tumor cells
This innovative test from OncoLab (Austria) identifies cancer cells via p53 prions and is based on the proprietary proximity ligation technology from Navinci. The test kits can be used with tissues, cells, and blood.
This patent-pending new technology from Oncolab allows more reliable identification of circulating tumor cells (CTC). The technology is based on the detection of p53 aggregates (“p53 prions”) using blood-based biopsy tests (BBB) developed by OncoLab. p53 is a well-known tumor suppressor protein and mutations of the gene can cause prion-like aggregation of p53-proteins. OncoLab has developed tests for amplified immuno-labeling of these aggregates using proprietary technology of Navinci Diagnostics AB, a Swedish biotech company specializing in visualizing proteins, their protein-protein interactions and post-translational modifications.
“The p53 mutations can cause misfolding of the p53 protein leading to aggregation”, explains Prof. Zeillinger, CEO of OncoLab. “The misfolded proteins can act prion-like, also causing normal p53 proteins to bind to the aggregates. One of our tests can identify these aggregates in immobilized tissue sections or cells – another one in blood and other bodily fluids, allowing the identification of CTCs and DTCs (disseminated tumor cells) that often contain p53 aggregates.”
More than half of all cancer cells contain Tp53 mutations that may lead to misfolded proteins and aggregation. Identifying those aggregates can significantly improve the reliability of CTC identification as Prof. Zeillinger adds: “Most tests for identifying CTCs are based on detection of epithelial adhesion molecules (EpCAM) or cytokeratins. But not all CTCs express these biomarkers, and they are often downregulated during tumor progression. An additional marker, especially one expressed by a well-known tumor suppressor gene, is a highly desirable addition in the test kit market for CTCs, and we are very pleased to offer this novel assay for p53 prions.”
Besides p53 aggregates, the OncoLab’s CTC test “nPAC™ AMYLOplex™ CTC-p53” also detects known CTC markers (several cytokeratins) as well as leucocyte markers. It is based on immunofluorescence, which allows direct identification of CTCs and provides information about the morphology and numbers of CTCs. Immunofluorescence staining is also used in OncoLab’s “nPAC™ CRC IF” series of tests offered in collaboration with US-based AxonDx, LLC.
Further tests for other aggregated cancer proteins are under development at OncoLab, the first company to offer an extensive range of products for BBB based on either PCR or immunofluorescence. The development of the p53 prion test kits was a joint effort with the Swedish company Navinci that collaborates closely with Uppsala University.
Prof. Ulf Landegren of the Department of Immunology, Genetics and Pathology, Molecular Tools, comments: “Over recent years, my group has collaborated with Navinci to develop the necessary technologies for routine identification of aggregated tumor proteins. We are excited to now see the first kits hitting the market – and the potential for further tests is enormous.” Robert Gunnarsson, CEO Navinci Diagnostics AB comments: “As OncoLab has proven, the proximity ligation assay technique is ideal for studying aggregated tumor proteins, and we are thrilled that we together with OncoLab can provide novel tools to enhance the diagnosis of cancer and find better treatments.”
OncoLab brands the entire range of tests for aggregated proteins “AMYLOplex™.” The “AMYLOplex™ p53” test is available for research use (RUO), and a CE-IVD marked version for diagnostic purposes will be released within the following months.
As the first worldwide supplier of CTC test kits based on immunofluorescence and kits based on PCR, and now adding another first by offering the p53 prion test kits, OncoLab is regarded as one of the most innovative companies in the growing CTC/CRC diagnostic market. The complete product range of the company will be presented at the 5th ACTC – Advances in Circulation Tumor Cells meeting, 22nd – 25th of September, Kalamata, Greece.
Navinci Diagnostics AB and Lucerna-Chem AG have entered a distribution agreement for the Swiss market
”The NaveniTM product line, which enables our customers to study the interplay of proteins in tissues and cells accurately, complements very well our broad portfolio of antibodies and research reagents. The Navinci team is dedicated to work closely with their customers and continue to innovate the field of spatial biology, which fits perfectly with our way of working.” – Adriano Tonini, COO Lucerna-Chem
“Switzerland is an important market for Navinci and Lucerna-Chem is an excellent organization for us to partner with as they have a strong presence in the region, customer base, and network. We much look forward to working closely with Lucerna-Chem to bring the NaveniTM proximity ligation assay kits to the Swiss life science research and pharma industry.” – Robert Gunnarsson, CEO Navinci Diagnostics AB.
Navinci partners with Biomol GmbH for the distribution of Naveni products in Germany
”Germany is an important market for Navinci and Biomol is a great organization for us to partner with. They are a highly skilled sales and marketing team that applies modern and forward-thinking methodologies. We look forward to working closely with Biomol to bring the NaveniTM proximity ligation assay kits to the German life science research and industry” says Robert Gunnarsson, CEO Navinci Diagnostics AB.
”With the addition of the NaveniTM product line to our broad portfolio of antibodies and research reagents, we enable our customers to specifically study the interplay of proteins in tissues and cells. Founded on the legacy as the original developer of the in situ proximity ligation assay, the Navinci team is dedicated to engaging with their customers to support and adapt to their needs, which resonates well with our way of doing business” says Wilco van Hamond, CEO Biomol GmbH.
Navinci announces collaboration with Cambridge Bioscience in the UK and Ireland
Today we are pleased to announce our collaboration with Cambridge Bioscience to distribute Naveni products in the UK and Ireland!
”We are very pleased to partner with Cambridge Bioscience and their highly skilled sales and marketing team. Their long experience of serving customers in the life science research and industry will catalyze the accessibility of the NaveniTM proximity ligation assay kits in the UK and Ireland market.”
Robert Gunnarsson, CEO Navinci Diagnostics AB
”The Naveni products will be a great complement to our broad portfolio of antibodies and other research reagents, enabling our academic and pharma customers to study the interplay of proteins in tissues and cells. Navinci’s innovative products, combined with their expertise as the original developers of the proximity ligation technology, provides a good foundation for collaboration with our expert sales and support teams. Our aim is always to provide best-in-class solutions and support to our customers.”
Mike Kerins, Managing Director Cambridge Bioscience Limited