Konica Minolta Launches Dedicated Precision Medicine Business in Japan

| 15 oktober 2018

On October 1, 2018, Konica Minolta, Inc. (Konica Minolta) started the operations of Konica Minolta Precision Medicine Japan, Inc. (KMPMJ). KMPMJ is a 100%-owned subsidiary of Konica Minolta with responsibility for marketing high-end precision medicine tools and diagnostic services in Japan. Precision medicine is medical care that uses genetic and molecular profiling to optimise treatment for specific groups of patients.

The tools needed to diagnose, treat and develop new therapies

KMPMJ will be led by President Ken Masuo, a seasoned marketing executive with over 30 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry, and will be based in Tokyo with 23 employees. KMPMJ will provide tools to identify and track disease-linked biomarkers [1] and related services to accelerate the development of targeted therapies. It will also offer diagnostic and prognostic testing services using genes, proteins, and other molecules that increase physicians’ ability to assess and treat their patients’ disease.

The launch of KMPMJ is the latest development in Konica Minolta’s ambitious goal of transforming personalised medicine. Building on its own world-class capabilities in medical imaging and software as well as its proprietary protein quantification technology, High Sensitivity Tissue Testing (HSTT) [2], Konica Minolta announced its intentions to revolutionise personalised patient care in 2017 with the acquisitions of Ambry Genetics, Corporation (Ambry), a top American genetic testing and analysis firm, and Invicro, LLC (Invicro), a leading provider of drug discovery support services using AI technology. Combining the synergistic technologies of these three companies, KMPMJ addresses an unmet need in modern healthcare for reliable, standardised, and integrated technologies that support every aspect of translational medicine. Currently, biopharmaceutical companies and research institutes must piece together technologies from different sources to conduct translational research, which can lead to inefficiencies, inaccuracies or quality control issues.

Adding value through precision medicine

To deliver precision medicine, it is vital to identify how diseases evolve in individuals, basing decisions on an array of information. These data extend from gene mutation types and treatment selections to protein levels that drugs target, medicinal efficiency projections, and organ disease progressions and prognoses.

By leveraging or integrating the technology platforms of Konica Minolta, Ambry, and Invicro, KMPMJ will provide molecular level detection, analytics, and informatics that can deepen knowledge about the functions and connections between genes, proteins, and organs.

The company will benefit from a global drug discovery and R&D support network involving more than 1,000 employees from the individual companies.

Specific precision medicine solutions

  • For pharmas and academia, KMPMJ will offer customised services that accelerate and streamline R&D by identifying, quantifying and characterising disease-linked biomarkers

  • For medical institutions, KMPMJ will offer genetic diagnostics services, molecular marking and analytics

  • For researchers analysing diverse biological information from multiple sources, KMPMJ will offer bioinformatics services based on amassed data

  • For clinical researchers in academia and the biopharmaceutical industry, KMPMJ will also offer clinical trial patient selection services based on molecular biomarkers

[1] Biomarkers are indicators of issues with genetic, protein, or organ states, including from blood, urine, and tissue samples and medical imaging.

[2] Konica Minolta is pioneering a new molecular imaging technology called High Sensitivity Tissue Testing (HSTT) that offers unprecedented sensitivity and accuracy in the detection, quantification and precise location of proteins within a cell associated with disease and cellular function. In addition to its initial use in proteomics, HSTT is a platform technology for studying the molecular causes and characteristics of a disease with potential future applications in cytology, blood testing and the real-time monitoring of mRNA, miRNA, and DNA in living systems.