For a certain generation of investors the word ‘laser’ is indelibly tied to a Dr Evil reference.

Over the last two years Invion (ASX:IVX) has been valiantly working against this association, and today says its lasers (not attached to the head of a shark, not designed to kill people in a giant indoor tank) can shrink ovarian cancers.

A pre-clinical study in mice by Hudson Institute of Medical Research found the treatment caused the death of tumour tissue but not surrounding healthy tissue, and was accompanied by an influx of immune cells, indicating an anti-tumour immune response.

The treatment is a photosynthesising compound called PhotoSoft, which is activated by specific waves of light delivered from, yes, a laser.


In other ASX health news today:

Cancer detector Imagion Biosystems (ASX:IBX) has sold $300,000 of nanoparticles to an Israeli biotechnology company developing cancer treatments based on hyperthermia; the principle of killing cancer cells by heating them.

Apiam Animal Health (ASX:AHX) will buy Grampians Animal Health for $4.65m. GAH is headquartered in Hamilton, part of the Western District of Victoria and one of Australia’s largest and most productive sheep farming regions. It generated revenue of $4.10m in FY19.

Former Sydney tax accountant Vanda Gould has been dropped from the boards of nuclear medicine company Cyclopharm (ASX:CYC) and nutraceuticals company Vita Life Sciences (ASX:VLS), after being found guilty of witness tampering in a $383m international tax avoidance case. Gould is now disqualified from being a company director.

SUDA Pharmaceuticals (ASX:SUD), a leader in oro-mucosal drug delivery, has appointed Dr Michael Baker as CEO, starting on January 2, 2020. Baker joins SUDA Pharmaceuticals from the leading Australian life science fund, Bioscience Managers, where he was based from 2017.

Benitec Biopharma (ASX:BLT) is delisting from the ASX and moving to the US to streamline and reduce costs, align its corporate and operations structure, provide access to a broader range of US investors in a market, and improve attractiveness as a potential takeover target.

Prescient Therapeutics (ASX:PTX) is changing its phase 1b study in patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML), after only three of 15 patients responded to the treatment. They are changing the dose levels of the PTX-200 drug and the chemotherapy administered.

Recce Pharmaceuticals (ASX:RCE) reported positive data in a rat topical burns treated with its lead compound RECCE 327. Top line results showed significant antibacterial activity against Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA – superbug) in rats with topical burns.