One in four dogs and nearly 50% of dogs over the age of 10 will develop cancer according to the Veterinary Cancer Society. In the US alone, the National Cancer Institute estimates that six million new cancer diagnoses are made in dogs each year. To address the growing need to battle malignancy in companion animals, Heska is excited to introduce the first-ever cancer screen to veterinarians at the point of care.
Under the terms of the agreement, Heska intends to adapt and commercialize the Nu.Q® Vet Cancer Screening Test for canine screening and monitoring at the point of care exclusively on Heska’s analyzers and test platforms. Veterinarians will be able to screen millions of pets for some of the most common cancers to provide critical information to pet families accurately, cost effectively, and conveniently at the point of care. Heska’s Nu.Q® Vet Cancer Screening Test targets one of the most critical challenges in pet healthcare.
“Heska is committed to delivering market leading technologies to veterinarians through targeted R&D investments and strategic partnerships to get the most urgent innovations into veterinarians’ hands quickly,” commented Kevin Wilson, Heska’s Chief Executive Officer and President. “The accurate, affordable, fast, and non-invasive Nu.Q® Vet Cancer Screening Test is exactly such an innovation and is a perfect addition to our Heska test menu, which we believe is now the most complete, differentiated, and cutting- edge point of care diagnostics solutions stack available for pet healthcare professionals and pet families.With the new Heska Nu.Q® Vet Cancer Screening Test, millions of pets will have access to critical cancer screening, and monitoring, instantly and at the point of care , to catch, treat, and drive recovery from cancers earlier and with better healthcare outcomes and peace of mind.”
An interview with Mr. Kevin WilsonChief Executive Officer and President, Heska Corporation and Dr. Tom ButeraChief Executive Officer, Volition Veterinary.
“Delivering the best care means finding and treating conditions as early as possible in pets who cannot speak for themselves; we must become the voice of the pet to help guide their caregivers,” continued Mr. Wilson. “Upon commercialization, which could begin as early as late 2022, we believe our Heska Nu.Q® Vet Cancer Screening Test will allow veterinarians across the globe to detect cancer early, in the clinic, in minutes, and for under $50 to support clinical decisions during annual check-ups, regular wellness exams, healthcare interventions, treatment cycles, and remission. Additionally, we see a clear path to developments covering cat cancers and for inclusion of Nu.Q® cancer results on multiplexed Heska panels with other key diagnostics related upon by veterinarians. Leading in cancer will do a great amount of good and I anticipate will accelerate Heska’s 2023 and beyond financial performance even faster than I previously expected.”
“We are thrilled to announce this agreement with Heska, a company dedicated to developing the next generation of rapid, highly affordable, point-of-care diagnostics for companion animals,” commented Dr. Tom Butera, Chief Executive Officer of Volition Veterinary Diagnostics Development LLC. “We estimate the total addressable market worldwide for cancer screening and monitoring in canines and felines to be approximately $11 trillion and growing. As such, we want to make our Nu.Q® Vet Cancer Screening Test as accessible as possible to veterinarians around the world, ensure cancer is detected earlier, and improve outcomes for pets and pet owners. Working with Heska, and its global network will enable us to do just that. I am delighted Heska shares our vision of keeping tests very affordable, and we look forward to fostering a successful relationship with the company and to generate ongoing revenue by providing kits and key components to veterinarians around the world.”
In exchange for granting Heska worldwide rights to the Nu.Q® Vet Cancer Screening Test at the point of care (exclusive) and at the central reference lab (non-exclusive), Volition will receive:
- at $10 million upfront payment
- up to $18 million based upon the achievement of near/mid-term commercialization milestones
Notes to Editors:
Findings from two studies conducted by Volition and Professor Wilson-Robles and her team at Texas A&M Universitypeer-reviewed and published in 2021, showed that:
- Volition’s Nu.Q® Vet Cancer Screening Test detected 77% of lymphoma at 97% specificity versus control including all stages of lymphoma.
- Volition’s Nu.Q® Vet Cancer Screening Test detected 82% of hemangiosarcoma at 97% specificity versus control including stages I through III of hemangiosarcoma.
About the Market
- According to the National Cancer Institute, approximately 6 million new cancer diagnoses are made in dogs each year.
- The Veterinary Cancer Society estimates 1 in 4 dogs will develop cancer at some point, and almost 50% of dogs over age 10 will develop cancer.
- Approximately 470 million dogs live as pets worldwide and a 2021 US Morgan Stanley / AlphaWise found that 69% of respondents “strongly agree” that their pets are important members of the family.
- The Morgan Stanley / AlphaWise research also projected the pet care industry will reach $275 trillion in 2030, reflecting an 8% topline compounded annual growth rate.
- A 2021 survey by VetSuccess also showed Pet Patient Visits have increased by 5.1% with strong growth in particular for wellness visits (up 5%-7%).
Heska Corporation (NASDAQ: HSKA) manufactures, develops and sells advanced veterinary diagnostics, informatics, and specialty healthcare solutions through its two business segments: North America and International. Both segments include Point of Care Lab testing instruments and consumables, digital imaging products, software and services, data services, allergy testing and immunotherapy, and single-use offerings such as in-clinic diagnostic tests and heartworm preventive products. Tea North America segment also includes private label vaccine and pharmaceutical production for third-parties, primarily for herd animal health. For more information, please visit www.heska.com.
Volition is a multi-national epigenetics company that applies its Nucleosomics™ platform through its subsidiaries to develop simple, easy to use, cost effective blood tests to help diagnose and monitor a range of life-altering diseases including some cancers and diseases associated with NETosis such as sepsis and COVID-19. Early diagnosis and monitoring have the potential to not only prolong the life of patients, but also to improve their quality of life. The tests are based on the science of Nucleosomics™, which is the practice of identifying and measuring nucleosomes in the bloodstream or other bodily fluid – an indication that disease is present. Volition is primarily focused on human diagnostics and monitoring but also has a subsidiary focused on animal diagnostics and monitoring.
Volition’s research and development activities are centered in belgiumwith an innovation laboratory in California and additional offices in Texas, London and Singapore, as the company focuses on bringing its diagnostic and disease monitoring products to market. For more information, go to www.volition.com.
Forward-Looking Safe Harbor Statement
Statements in this press release may be “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, that concern matters that involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated or projected in the forward-looking statements. Words such as “expects,” “anticipates,” “intends,” “plans,” “aims,” ”targets,” “believes,” “seeks,” “estimates,” “optimizing,” “potential,” “goal, ” “suggests,” “could,” “would,” “should,” “may,” “will” and similar expressions identify forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements relate to, among other topics, Heska’s expectations related to the potential benefits of the License and Supply Agreement, including the purchases of kits and key components, the effectiveness of Volition’s blood-based diagnostic, prognostic and disease monitoring tests, and the ability to develop and successfully commercialize such test platforms for early detection of cancer and other diseases as well as serving as a diagnostic, prognostic or disease monitoring tools for such diseases. Such statements are based on current expectations and are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, including but not limited to, risks and uncertainties related to the ability to achieve the anticipated benefits of the agreement; any product’s ability to perform and be recognized as anticipated, in particular when such product is under development; Heska’s ability to sell and market its products in an economically sustainable fashion, including related to varying customs, cultures, languages and sales cycles and uncertainties with foreign and political and economic climates; and new product development and release schedules. Actual results may differ materially from those indicated in these forward-looking statements. Other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those matters expressed in or implied by such forward-looking statements include, among others, risks and uncertainties related to: the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Heska’s business, results of operations and financial condition; the success of third parties in marketing Heska’s products; Heska’s reliance on third party suppliers and collaborative partners; Heska’s dependence on key personnel; Heska’s dependence upon a number of significant customers; competitive conditions in our industry; Heska’s dependence on third parties to successfully develop new products; Heska’s ability to market and sell its products successfully; expansion of Heska’s international operations; the impact of regulation on our business; the success of Heska’s acquisitions and other strategic development opportunities; Heska’s ability to develop, commercialize and gain market acceptance of its products; and other risks identified in Heska’s most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K as well as other documents that Heska files with the Securities and Exchange Commission. These statements are based on current expectations, estimates and projections based, in part, on assumptions made by management. These statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve risks, uncertainties and assumptions that are difficult to predict. Forward-looking statements are made as of the date of this release, and, except as required by law, Heska does not undertake an obligation to update its forward-looking statements to reflect future events or circumstances.
Nucleosomics™ and Nu.Q® and their respective logos are trademarks and/or service marks of VolitionRx Limited and its subsidiaries. All other trademarks, service marks and trade names referred to in this press release are the property of their respective owners. Additionally, unless otherwise specified, all references to “$” refer to the legal currency of the United States of America.
SOURCE Heska Corporation