OncoMed Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Fluidigm Corporation Announce Strategic Collaboration

Jan 05, 2010, 16:30 ET from OncoMed Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

REDWOOD CITY and SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., Jan. 5 /PRNewswire/ -- OncoMed Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Fluidigm Corporation today announced a new initiative to apply Fluidigm's unique microfluidic tools to the analysis of tumor cell heterogeneity, including cancer stem cells. The collaboration will combine Fluidigm's advanced microfluidic platforms with OncoMed's proprietary cancer stem cell sorting technology to generate unique tools for analyzing, quantifying and developing treatments directed at a highly tumorigenic cell population.

In the initial application, OncoMed will apply Fluidigm's BioMark(TM) System along with Fluidigm's proprietary Dynamic Array(TM) integrated fluidic circuits (IFCs) to perform detailed gene expression analysis of solid tumors at the whole tumor and single-cell level. This phase will track changes in cancer stem cells found in human tumors following treatment with OncoMed's extensive pipeline of therapeutic monoclonal antibodies. The companies will apply this same technology to analyze tumor heterogeneity and cancer stem cell frequency across OncoMed's proprietary human tumor bank which includes approximately one hundred human tumor biopsies that have been engrafted and minimally passaged in immunocompromised mice. The OncoMed/Fluidigm collaboration also has the potential to include novel and next-generation microfluidic and tissue sample-preparation technologies that Fluidigm is currently developing.

"We are excited to be working with Fluidigm, a world leader in microfluidic technology, to enable the single-cell analysis of cancer stem cells as a tool for identifying unique drug targets. This technology has broad applications, including the ability to assess the safety and efficacy of therapeutic antibodies that have been generated to eradicate these important cells which fuel the growth and proliferation of solid tumors," said Paul Hastings, OncoMed's President and Chief Executive Officer.

"This will be a highly productive alliance. The combination of OncoMed's expertise in cancer and cancer stem cells, together with Fluidigm's unique single-cell analysis technology should yield important new therapeutic discoveries," said Gajus Worthington, President and Chief Executive Officer of Fluidigm. "Our respective capabilities are highly complementary."

About OncoMed Pharmaceuticals

OncoMed Pharmaceuticals is a clinical-stage company that discovers and develops novel therapeutics targeting cancer stem cells, the cells believed to be capable of driving tumor growth, recurrence and metastases. A leader in cancer stem cell research, the company has established a library of antibodies to cancer stem cell proteins for the treatment of solid tumors such as pancreatic, breast, colorectal and lung cancers. OncoMed's lead candidate, OMP-21M18 is currently in Phase I clinical trials. In addition to OMP-21M18, OncoMed's pipeline includes several novel preclinical product candidates targeting multiple validated cancer stem cell pathways. Privately-held, OncoMed's investors include: Nomura Phase4 Ventures, US Venture Partners, Latterell Venture Partners, Morgenthaler Ventures, The Vertical Group, Adams Street Partners, De Novo Ventures, Delphi Ventures, Bay Partners and GlaxoSmithKline. Additional information can be found at the company's website: www.oncomed.com.

About Fluidigm

Fluidigm develops, manufactures and markets proprietary Integrated Fluidic Circuit (IFC) systems that significantly improve productivity in life science research. Fluidigm's IFCs enable the simultaneous performance of thousands of sophisticated biochemical measurements in extremely minute volumes. These "integrated circuits for biology" are made possible by miniaturizing and integrating liquid handling components on a single microfluidic device (IFC). Fluidigm's systems, consisting of instrumentation, software and single-use chips, increase throughput, decrease costs and enhance sensitivity compared to conventional laboratory systems. Fluidigm products have not been cleared or approved by the Food and Drug Administration for use as a diagnostic and are only available for research use.

For more information, please visit www.fluidigm.com

Fluidigm, the Fluidigm logo, Topaz, BioMark, Dynamic Array, Digital Array, Access Array and NanoFlex are trademarks or registered trademarks of Fluidigm Corporation. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

SOURCE OncoMed Pharmaceuticals, Inc.