Our Science

Images courtesy of Dr Toby Garrood
Guy's Hospital, London

Maraciclatide is for investigational use only and is not approved by the FDA or UK and European authorities.

The Hybrid Gamma Optical Camera is for investigational use only and has not been cleared or approved by the FDA or UK and European authorities.

Maraciclatide: Bringing molecular imaging to rheumatology

99mTc-maraciclatide is a radio-labelled tracer that is being investigated as a tool for gauging disease activity in inflammatory arthritis.

Hand

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA), psoriatic arthritis (PsA) and axial spondyloarthritis (AxSpA) are chronic, progressive, painful, incurable conditions in which the body’s own immune system attacks the joints. If untreated they can result in irreversible joint damage and permanent disability. Multiple therapies are available that can slow or even halt disease progression but it remains a challenge to identify which treatment is best for each individual patient:

  • There is no definitive blood marker, such as blood glucose levels in diabetes
  • X-rays show the damage that has already been done to the joints
  • Full clinical assessments require significant hands-on time with a rheumatologist and symptoms do not always correlate with the underlying disease process
  • MRI is expensive and not readily accessible
  • Ultrasound is highly dependent upon the skill of the operator and time-consuming

There is, therefore, a clear need for a simple, rapid, robust, reliable, readily accessible and cost effective technique to assess disease activity and guide treatment decisions.

Data from clinical studies suggest that imaging with 99mTc-maraciclatide may allow rheumatologists to see inflammation in the joints which could help them deliver the right treatment to the right patient at the right time (personalised medicine) potentially leading to improved outcomes and better quality of life.

There are also a number of other potential indications with significant unmet medical needs that we are investigating.

The Hybrid Gamma Optical Camera: Molecular imaging anywhere

The hybrid gamma optical camera (HGC) is portable, smaller, easier to use and more cost effective than anything that exists on the market today.

Prototype of Hybrid Gamma Camera
Hybrid Gamma Optical Camera Prototype

Currently the benefits of molecular imaging (MI) with radio-labelled tracers are largely restricted to patients who can be referred to the Nuclear Medicine (NM) Department of a hospital where the big, expensive, heavy, conventional cameras are sited in dedicated rooms.

The HGC is designed to allow molecular imaging to be routinely taken from the NM Department to the patient, wherever they may be - the outpatient clinic, hospital ward, physician office, the intensive care unit (ICU), or even a remote village in the developing world.

The HGC has the potential to improve the scanning experience for patients who have trouble keeping still or feel claustrophobic in the full-body scanners; a more comfortable patient is less prone to movement during the exam.

An additional unique feature of the HGC is patented co-registration of the gamma and optical images. This technology is anticipated to make images easier to interpret for the untrained eye, which should enhance physician/patient communication and patients having a better understanding of their condition and treatment options.