Today’s cancer treatment methods often employ a “shotgun” approach because we lack the tools to determine the cancer’s next move. Taking advantage of the fact that cancer cells can hijack the body’s normal wound healing processes provides us with insight into cancer cell behaviour. By studying how cancer cells utilize the inflammatory pathway triggered by our treatments, we can predict those patients who still harbour micrometastatic disease after treatment, and at the same time provide far more effective therapies for the treatment of cancer.
Encyt was founded in 2014 and has been engaged in pioneering research that has uncovered evidence for a distinct and highly conserved inflammatory response triggered by surgical removal of a primary breast, colorectal, or prostate tumor and treatment with chemotherapy or radiation. This response occurs within a predictable time frame after cancer treatment and can trigger accelerated regrowth of a surviving cancer cell population and induce cancer stem cell enrichment. This inflammatory response will lead to the development of a metastatically competent, treatment-resistant cancer cell phenotype in the cancer cells that survive the treatment.
Encyt’s main focus at present is to test our novel and proprietary therapeutic approach in a human clinical trial. However, based on our research discoveries, Encyt has also started to work in the area of liquid biopsy. We are developing a blood test that can predict the effectiveness of a given chemotherapeutic regimen on the basis of the level of expression of several distinct cytokines. We believe this work has enormous potential to serve as a valuable predictive tool to help guide treatment decisions made by medical oncologists.