London, UK and Ølstykke, Denmark, June 20, 2023.

Motilent Limited and Minerva Imaging today announced a strategic partnership to re-envision the way we do translational research in digestive disease research. Minerva Imaging is a global leader in preclinical in vivo imaging, specialising in advanced techniques including MRI, PET & nuclear medicine in a range of preclinical models. Motilent specialises in quantitative evaluation of the digestive tract across disease areas like Crohn’s and Colitis, irritable bowel syndrome and disorders of the stomach and colon.

Figure 1: Coronal image of the rat abdomen showing intestinal motion over time acquired with a cine-MRI sequence (top left) and corresponding motility map (top right). On the bottom left abdominal images of a human with corresponding motility map (bottom right).

“The main challenge for drug development in digestive disease is a misalignment of biomarkers and end-points in the animal models and patient population. Animals will often undergo a surgical endpoint and humans a questionnaire or symptom assessment. As a result there is a high attrition of potential medications across the translational gap. Using non-invasive imaging, we can for the first time perform the same observation in the animal, test subject in Phase I-III and ultimately in the patient. Crucially, where a drug fails to reach its primary endpoint or, has a partial effect in some patients, we can ‘reverse-translate’ back to the preclinical setting to understand mechanisms before initiating a new, more targeted study” said Alex Menys, CEO Motilent

“At Minerva we are at the forefront of R&D and our work builds on more than two decades of research in Molecular Imaging. We are proficient in conducting in vivo molecular imaging studies with a translational focus. This partnership will facilitate access to high-quality preclinical investigation in digestive disease models. It enables a more joined up approach through the drug development process collaborating on advancing new treatment modalities for patients. By using non-invasive molecular imaging, we can now measure similar biomarkers in animal models of gastrointestinal disease as in humans and thereby allow for better translation of animal findings into the clinic. This makes a range of new insights possible” said Carsten Nielsen, CEO and co-founder Minerva Imaging.

About Motilent

Motilent’s is a medical image analysis company. Our mission is to change the way we see the gut, with a focus on Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) and Motility disorders within the field of Gastroenterology. Motilent has FDA cleared and CE Marked technology on the market targeted primarily at small bowel Crohn’s Disease in adults and children. Motilent has also developed the Entrolytics platform for medical image data sharing, visualisation and advanced assessment in use internationally by top research groups and life sciences companies.

About Minerva Imaging

Minerva Imaging is a scientifically driven CRO founded in 2011. The company focuses on the use of advanced models and molecular imaging for translational research and drug development. Minerva Imaging engages with its clients to understand their scientific questions and discuss how its methods and capabilities can provide answers. The company’s competences build on more than two decades of research within oncology, cardiovascular disease and molecular imaging performed at the University of Copenhagen and Rigshospitalet, the National University Hospital of Denmark.

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