TAGWORKS is a privately held pharmaceutical company based in Eindhoven, The Netherlands, and focuses on the development and application of in vivo chemistry to enable novel approaches in companion diagnostics and to improve the efficacy of cancer therapies. Founded in 2011, TAGWORKS is a spin-out of Royal Philips Electronics, originating from Philips’ molecular imaging expertise. The company is located at the High Tech Campus in the Center for Imaging Research and Education (CIRE), which is a shared life science facility between Philips, the Technical University Eindhoven, and third parties. The >2000 m2 infrastructure at CIRE, supported by dedicated scientists and technicians, includes organic and protein chemistry, molecular and cell biology, radiochemistry, and imaging labs. In addition, TAGWORKS works with several CRO partners.

TAGWORKS’ technology enables the in vivo radiolabeling of tagged antibodies through systemic and selective chemical manipulation in vivo. This In Vivo Chemistry technology, based on a bioorthogonal chemical reaction between a tag and a probe, improves antibody-based imaging. Tagged antibodies are allowed to circulate and accumulate at their target site. After clearance from non-target areas, a chemical probe is administered which binds to and labels the tagged antibody, boosting the signal-to-background ratio. It is exactly this technology that will be further developed under Click-it.

Chief executive officer Marc Robillard

Dr. Robillard is co-founder and CEO of Tagworks Pharmaceuticals, a spin-out of Philips. Tagworks develops and applies bioorthogonal conjugation and elimination chemistry in living systems to improve the efficacy of cancer therapies and to enable novel approaches in companion diagnostics. Prior to spinning out in 2011 he worked at Philips Research on molecular imaging and drug delivery and at Kreatech Diagnostics on microarray-based biomolecule detection. In addition he was a visiting scientist at the School of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences, University of New South Wales, Sydney, and he worked at the CRO Syncom as a synthetic chemist. Marc obtained his MSc and PhD in bio(in)organic chemistry at, respectively, the University of Groningen and the Leiden Institute of Chemistry, The Netherlands. He has published more than 28 peer-reviewed papers and is a co-inventor on 19 patents.

Research manager, Raffaella Rossin

Dr. Rossin joined Philips Research in 2008, serving as senior radiochemist on molecular imaging and drug delivery projects. With over 10 years’ experience in radiolabeling and in vitro/in vivo testing of small molecules, antibodies and nanoparticles, she has been instrumental in developing the In Vivo Chemistry program. Prior to Philips Research, she worked for five years at the School of Medicine of Washington University, St. Louis MO, as a post-doctoral research associate and research instructor in radiochemistry and nuclear imaging. Dr. Rossin obtained her PhD in radiochemistry at the University of Padova, Italy. She was also a visiting scientist at the School of Chemistry, University of Bangor, Wales, and at the Paul Scherrer Institute, Villigen, Switzerland. She has published more than 30 peer-reviewed papers and is a co-inventor on eight patents.