Today we are going to talk about a company that is making progress in the targeted treatment of cancers without much of the harmful effects of radiation treatments. Drugs and radiation used in treatment of cancers, while effective at killing tumor cells, cause damage to organs and healthy cells. Traditional methods of radiation treatment involve non-selective irradiation, damaging the normal tissue surrounding a tumor as well as the cancerous cells. Unfortunately, a lot of these side effects are a necessary evil when dealing with the far more insidious damage that can be done by cancer, but perhaps there is hope a better future.
One company working towards a better future is Sona Nanotech Inc. (CSE: SONA | OTCQB: SNANF). Sona is a nanotechnology life sciences firm that has developed multiple proprietary methods for the manufacture of various types of gold nanoparticles. Their principal business is the development and application of its proprietary technologies for use in multiplex diagnostic testing platforms that will improve performance over existing tests in the market. Sona Nanotech’s gold nanorod (GNR) particles are CTAB (cetyltrimethylammonium) free, eliminating the toxicity risks associated with the use of other gold nanorod technologies in medical applications. It is expected that Sona’s gold nanotechnologies may be adapted for use in applications, as a safe and effective delivery system for multiple medical treatments, subject to the approval of various regulatory boards, including Health Canada and the FDA.
As proof that the Company is advancing its cancer treatment technology, Sona recently announced that it has entered into an agreement to supply certain gold nanorod material to Siva Therapeutics, Inc., a developer of advanced, ‘in-vivo’ therapies for treating cancer. Siva Therapeutics’ Targeted Hyperthermia™ cancer Therapy (THT) is being developed to be an elegant, safe and effective cancer treatment that generates therapeutic heat within solid tumors using gold nanorods with an infrared light device. THT has multiple beneficial effects on tumors, and it is more selective than chemotherapy, less destructive than radiation, and without the risks of surgical treatment. In addition to being more affordable and more effective, this technology could deliver faster results than current cancer treatments. Siva has completed successful small animal studies for THT and is preparing to undertake large animal studies in 2023 before beginning human clinical trials for colorectal and possibly other cancer tumors.
Dr. Len Pagliaro, Ph.D., CEO of Siva, commented, “Sona’s biocompatible gold nanorods are the ideal material for use with Siva’s cancer tumor therapy system. Gold nanorods offer the highest efficiency of energy transfer and Sona’s are the only ones we have found globally that don’t use toxic CTAB in their manufacturing, assuring safety for ‘in-vivo’ medical applications.“ This is probably why Sona will be issued US$150,000 worth of stock in Siva and the term of the agreement is for ten years. Both positive endorsements for the GNR technology and for Sona.
Other developments going on at Sona include a rapid screening tool to help farmers combat the threat of Bovine Tuberculosis in herds, which is being developed with a consortium of companies as part of a Canada/UK industrial research and development program. It has cost the tax payer £500 million to control the disease in England in the last 10 years. It is estimated that the costs of bovine TB control will top £1 billion over the next decade, if no action is taken. There is also a concussion test for mild traumatic brain injury that aims to detect a series of biomarkers enabling the screening for mild concussions. The test is intended to detect the presence of GFAP (Glial Fibrillary Acidic Protein), a biological marker associated with concussions, typically released into the bloodstream within minutes of an impact to the head. This could be a tremendous benefit to society as a whole, particularly children. But the capitalist in me is thinking about how much the NFL would pay for a product that could see a player be cleared to resume play in a matter of minutes, or perhaps help the Miami Dolphins team medical staff keep their jobs by not putting Tua Tagovailoa back out on the field when they shouldn’t have.
There’s a lot of interesting stuff going on at Sona Nanotech. With a market cap of just C$7 million, any success could translate well for investors.