Dr. Larry Gold is the Founder and Chairman of the board, and Past CEO of SomaLogic. Prior to SomaLogic, he also founded NeXagen, Inc., which later became NeXstar Pharmaceuticals, Inc. In 1999, NeXstar merged with Gilead Sciences, Inc. to form a global organization committed to the discovery, development and commercialization of novel products that treat infectious diseases. Before forming NeXagen, he also co-founded and served as co-director of research at Synergen, Inc., a biotechnology company later acquired by Amgen, Inc.
Since 1970, Dr. Gold has been a professor at the University of Colorado at Boulder. While at the university, he served as the chairman of the Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology Department from 1988 to 1992. Dr. Gold has received many citations including the CU Distinguished Lectureship Award, the National Institutes of Health Merit Award, the Career Development Award, and the Chiron Prize for Biotechnology.
SOMAscan Protein Profiling and Clinical and Health Monitoring Utility.
Using a novel class of aptamers, called SOMAmers (which are Slow Off-rate Modified Aptamers), we have been able to simultaneously quantify about 4,000 human proteins in various sample matrices – blood, urine, tissues, and more. Thus far we have analyzed about 100,000 human blood samples on a smaller “plex” of more than 1,000 proteins, and have just started the analysis of more proteins on the larger “plex.” The samples have come from a variety of physiological and/or medical conditions – heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease, Duchenne muscular dystrophy, several cancers, some diet experiments, and so on. SOMAscan yields “biomarkers” whose concentrations reflect the disease or condition under study. This is the intrinsic value of very many protein measurements done in an unbiased approach. An example or two will be analyzed from the more than 40 clinical questions we have asked.
Through extensive work on early detection of Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer (NSCLC) in blood (through which we have seen heterogeneity in those samples), we turned to tumor homogenates to separate tumor-intrinsic heterogeneity from patient-specific host responses. The data show that tumor-intrinsic heterogeneity at the proteomic level is extensive.
Finally I will discuss the Big Dream at SomaLogic – The Wellness Chip – and how close we are to that achievement.