26.10.2012 - Pharma giant Bayer Healthcare and diagnostics specialist Qiagen N.V.
have forged an alliance in the field of companion diagnostics (CDx).
Initially, the joint efforts will concentrate on several types of solid tumours. But the agreement also lays the groundwork for a strong partnership in creating future companion diagnostics both inside and outside of oncology. The targeted companion diagnostics will be designed to run on Qiagen’s QIAsymphony line of automated instruments. In addition, the partners said that they will collaborate on developing technologies for patient profiling, which may result on research-use-only products for exploratory and translational medicine, said Qiagen.
„As healthcare providers increasingly select the right drugs based on each individual's genomic information, the treatment of cancer is undergoing a revolution," said Helge Lubenow, Senior Vice President Molecular Diagnostics Business Area and Member of the Executive Committee of Qiagen. Companion diagnostics guide treatment decisions with medications for cancers or other diseases by unlocking molecular information from each patient's tumour genome. „This helps to design more efficient clinical trials and to increase the overall probability of therapeutic success for patients suffering from cancer," said Andreas Busch, Head of Global Drug Discovery and Member of the Executive Committee of Bayer HealthCare.
Qiagen has more than 15 companion diagnostic collaborations ongoing with pharmaceutical and biotech companies. A major milestone was reached in July, on FDA approval of Therascreen RGQ PCR Kit. The companion diagnostic is used to screen for those metastatic colorectal cancer patients who most likely respond to therapy with Erbitux (cetuximab).
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