Cavadis is a Dutch biomedical company focusing on the discovery and validation of cardiovascular biomarkers. Our mission is to identify patients at risk of developing cardiovascular diseases. The ultimate goal is to develop clinically meaningful biomarker tests that will help personalize treatment and achieve better patient outcomes.
Recently the company focused its discovery efforts on a specific well-defined sub-fraction of the blood called exosomes. "Exosomes are small micro-vesicles (~50-100nm) shed by cells into the circulation as a way of cell-to-cell communication. Exosomes contain significant amounts of RNA, microRNA and proteins are a rich source for biomarker discovery. They can be isolated from plasma and serum and therefore do not suffer from the noise of abundant plasma proteins in a diagnostic test".
Cavadis executed proteomic studies on exosome content and identified a panel of four protein biomarkers predictive for secondary cardiovascular events. In initial verification studies the predictive value of these exosome-based biomarkers outperformed the traditional cardiovascular risk factors and showed an impressive reclassification of patients identified as high or low risk based on traditional risk factors alone. As part of BiomarCaRE Cavadis developed together with subcontractor Future Diagnostics BV a 4-plex Luminex assay. Large scale validation of the assay in thousands of patient sample is ongoing at laboratories of Universitats Klinikum Eppenorf (UKE).
In further verification studies one of the 4 exosomal protein markers demonstrated predictive value for primary cardiovascular events specifically in women. Cardiovascular disease is the most common cause of death in women and death rates for women are increasing while declining in men. Females and males differ in the presentation of cardiovascular symptoms and traditonal tests widely used to identify heart disease are shown to be less sensitive and less specific in women than in men. Therefore a high need exists to identify novel biomarkers specifically targeting females. Cavadis and BiomarCaRE Partner FLEET Bioprocessing collaboratively developed an ELISA for this female marker that is currently being tested by UKE in the case-cohort study (n= 20.000).