New Objective Delivering Solutions for the Study of Alzheimer’s Disease

September 28, 2022 – Littleton, MA (USA) Mike Lee, CEO, together with Emily Ehrenfeld, Co-Founder and President, New Objective hosted an event featuring the PicoChip and its establishment as a standardized platform for the study of Alzheimer’s disease biomarkers. Amanda Berg, Vice President, New Objective, welcomed Justyna A. Dobrowolska Zakaria, Department of Neurology, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, to share recent experiences and ongoing work utilizing PicoChip to develop robust, reproducible and precise methods to measure the metabolism of biomarkers for Alzheimer’s disease in her presentation titled Measuring the Turnover Rates of Alzheimer’s Disease Associated Proteins in the Human CNS by Utilizing a Stable Isotope Labeling-LC-MS/MS Method Employing New Objective PicoChips.

The event was launched by Helena Svobodova, Product Manager, New Objective, introducing Justyna – who openly shared her initial introduction to working in the study of Alzheimer’s disease in undergrad, where she “became vested” and highlighted her start at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis (WUSTL) working with Randall Bateman. Her ongoing work at Northwestern together with Robert Vassar featured ongoing collaborations with Randall Bateman and colleagues at WUSTL along with Matt Kennedy and colleagues at Merck. Justyna elegantly shared her story and why the study of Alzheimer’s disease is important to her, with an emphasis on developing solutions for earlier detection and effective treatment, which is personalized – targeted and focused on the patient.

The PicoChip solution, built on integrated PicoFrit technology, has fueled the quantitative LC-MS studies which Justyna has been leading at Northwestern. Justyna spoke of her introduction to New Objective and the PicoChip via the Northwestern Proteomics Core Facility led by Neil Kelleher – a platform Neil and colleagues have been using in the core facility since 2012. Justyna captured her experience as she stated “I went to the core lab . . . they said use this (PicoChip). I did and it was so easy!” Justyna led the translation and integration of PicoChip to the Vassar lab on the Thermo Altis platform, building on the methods developed together with the team at the core laboratory.

Justyna will be continuing her work as she makes plans to translate this validated approach using in vivo cerebrospinal fluid to serum, with a goal to inform how to dose therapies for trial participants and monitor therapeutic effects. Brad Ackermann of Eli Lilly sparked lively discussion together with Justyna opening up feedback inclusive of Steve Klohr, BioPharma Development Advisors, who spoke of his work in clinical trials during his tenure at Bristol Myers Squibb, and Robert Salzer at Regeneron. Steve underlined the value of Justyna’s work, stating that any “biomarker will be a huge boom to the studies of Alzheimer’s disease” and “correlating to blood will make it simpler to measure”. Brad further unified the discussion in emphasizing that a viable blood test will enable prophylactic treatment – a path to prevention for Alzheimer’s disease.    

Justyna together with colleagues, has published in Scientific Reports on this recent work migrating the study of biomarkers in Alzheimer’s disease from a method which presents a static view – single state/moment-in-time – to a dynamic view, measuring response over time and enabling the ability to dose therapies and monitor therapeutic effects for clinical trial patients.