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Unique Partnership Seeks to Advance Precision Medicine Options for Deadly GBM Brain Tumors


NDIANAPOLIS (October 10, 2022) – The ability to optimize precision medicine therapies for patients fighting aggressive and deadly brain cancers like Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM) starts with quality tissue specimens with molecular integrity intact. Improvements in tissue quality can then fuel improved outcomes through patient specific predictive response to therapies.

     Neurosurgical medical device innovator NICO Corporation and Kiyatec, a leader in functional precision oncology, announced a partnership today in glioma patient care to address the well-published unmet clinical need of obtaining better tissue to achieve greater accuracy in predicting tumor response to cancer targeted agents and chemotherapies.

     NICO’s automated, non-ablative and non-thermal Myriad tissue resection device and Automated Preservation System (APS) collects and biologically preserves tissue while in the operating suite. This helps maintain the tumor microenvironment, which aids in the preservation of biological information needed for researchers and clinicians. “Our goal is to lead the way in modernizing tissue biobanking for the new molecular era by starting the process in the operating room,” said Jim Pearson, president and CEO of NICO.

     In this partnership, Kiyatec’s CLIA-certified laboratory will receive tissue from NICO’s APS and use its 3D Predict™ Glioma assay, a 7-day drug-on-tumor process, to accurately predict a tumor-specific therapeutic response before treatment begins. This will help neuro-oncologists make more informed treatment decisions for their GBM patients.

     Kiyatec CEO Matthew Gevaert, PhD, said, “This initiative with NICO spotlights the importance of tissue quality as we implement new and better ways to improve outcomes for high grade glioma patients. Testing tissues with increased long-term cell viability, a benefit of tissue from NICO’s APS, enhances our mission to disrupt glioma cancer care by accurately predicting patient-specific response and non-response before the start of treatment.”

     A recent study comparing tumor tissue collected using conventional methods to tissue collected using the NICO Myriad and APS system showed NICO’s tissue was equivalent or superior in every metric tested: long-term cell viability, RNA preservation, protein preservation, and live cell count. This important advancement is a key ingredient in suppling Kiyatec with the best possible information for 3D Predict.

     “Imagine better tissue leading to more certainty of what drugs will work, or even more importantly, what drugs won’t work in treating one of the most treatment-resistant cancers,” Pearson said. “This partnership is a step in the right direction for dramatically increasing the percentage of patients we can help with precision medicine.”

      Because GBM patients exhibit highly variable treatment responses in both newly diagnosed and recurrent tumors, tests measuring the response of their live cancer cells against a panel of drugs – which then determine the best patient-specific therapy options – may result in delayed disease progression. To date, drug treatments for GBM have not significantly extended patient lives beyond a few extra months. Improving patient-specific response detection through highly viable tissue samples is an opportunity to significantly improve this extension of time, Gevaert said.

About NICO Corporation

NICO is the first and only company in the world to develop and patent technologies to create an entirely new minimally invasive surgical market in neurosurgery for subcortical and skull base lesions. NICO technologies have been featured in more than 180 peer-reviewed publications with over 550 unique authors from major academic centers. Data from these publications suggest improved clinical outcomes in Minimally Invasive Parafascicular Surgery (MIPS). For more information, visit, and follow the latest news on LinkedIn and Twitter.

About Kiyatec

Kiyatec is a functional precision oncology company that measures the response of each patient’s live cancer cells to inform oncologists’ treatment selection decisions. The company’s Clinical Services offers clinical testing for high-grade glioma, and is developing assays for use in ovarian, breast, non-small cell lung cancers, and rare tumors in its CLIA certified lab. The company’s Drug Development Services works in partnership with leading biopharmaceutical companies to unlock response dynamics for their pre-clinical investigational drug candidates across the majority of solid tumor types. For more information, visit and connect with us on LinkedIn and Twitter.

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Tamia Sumpter

Tamia is a driven senior undergraduate Bioengineering student currently enrolled at Clemson University. With a strong foundation in her field, she has honed her skills through hands-on experience in research and development at Eli Lilly & Company. During her time in the ADME department, Tamia contributed significantly by working on siRNAs and their applications in finding In Vitro-In Vivo Correlation (IVIVC). Looking ahead, Tamia has set her sights on a promising career in law. She aspires to specialize in Intellectual Property Law, with a particular focus on serving as in-house counsel for leading medical device or pharmaceutical companies. Her enthusiasm for this role is palpable as she prepares to embark on her legal journey! She is also a proud member of the Omicron Phi chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., PEER Mentor for Clemson PEER/WiSE, and currently serves as the President of Clemson Bioengineering Organization (CBO). With her unique blend of scientific knowledge and legal interests, Tamia is poised to make a meaningful impact in the healthcare and life sciences industries.