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Charles River, Takeda, Veracyte, and More: News From December 2019

By Diagnostics World Staff

December 23, 2019
| December featured news, products, and partnerships from around the diagnostics community from numerous companies, universities, and organizations, including Charles River, Takeda, Veracyte, and more. 

Charles River announced they will provide clients exclusive access to the new Cosmic antibody library launched by Distributed Bio. Previous Distributed Bio discovery platforms have delivered sequence-unique binders to every target panned, including ion channels, ultra-specific pMHC complex binders, G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs), immune-oncology targets, human-mouse cross-reactive epitopes, therapeutic anti-idiotypes, antiviral bnAbs, and more. Distributed Bio’s new Cosmic antibody library encompasses over one-hundred billion fully human antibodies, computationally optimized for therapeutic developability and complementarity-determining regions (CDRs) sourced and incorporated at specific frequencies for maximum library diversity. Its increased diversity will eclipse Distributed Bio’s unprecedented antibody discovery achievements, and now is offered with guaranteed molecular exclusivity of every hit delivered to every client. In 2018, Distributed Bio entered into an exclusive partnership with Charles River. This partnership grants Charles River’s clients access to Distributed Bio’s antibody libraries and integrated antibody optimization technologies. Distributed Bio’s libraries are computationally optimized for both sequence diversity and engineering fitness through the analysis of thousands of human antibody repertoires and all known monoclonal therapeutics in clinical trials. A combination of Distributed Bio’s antibody libraries and Charles River’s extensive drug development expertise creates a unique end-to-end platform for therapeutic antibody discovery and development. With a focus on speed and design, this partnership continues to increase the probability of success for delivering high-quality antibody candidates. Press release 

Takeda and MiTest announced an exclusive partnership to optimize MiTest's  personalized risk and outcome prediction tool for widespread use in patients with Crohn's disease (CD). The validated tool can help predict a patient's individual potential risk for CD-related complications based on clinical, serologic and genetic variables and create a visual report to support informed, shared decision-making with their healthcare providers. "Crohn's disease can cause severe complications and irreversible damage to the bowels. The tool has the potential to help tailor the approach for patients with Crohn's disease by better informing them and their physicians about their individual potential risks for developing complications early on, before disease complications occur," said Corey Siegel, MiTest’s co-founder, section chief of gastroenterology and hepatology and co-director of the IBD Center at the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, NH, in a press release. "The tool will help initiate conversation around potential disease progression and options based on predicted outcomes." "Physicians using the validated predictive tool will be better able to support their patients with Crohn's disease, who face significant challenges, by developing a disease management plan based on a shared understanding of their individual prognosis," Marla Dubinsky, MiTest co-founder, chief of pediatric gastroenterology and nutrition, co-director of the Susan and Leonard Feinstein IBD Clinical Center at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York, said in an official statement. "We look forward to our continued work with Takeda to bring this important resource to physicians and patients." This tool predicts an individual's potential risk for disease progression before he or she develops severe complications using a blood sample that is analyzed for patient-specific serologic markers and NOD2 status, combined with clinical phenotype information. Based on the results, the tool will create a patient-friendly graphical risk score. Health care providers will then receive a report that can facilitate discussions with patients to determine an appropriate course of action. Press release 

Veracyte announced that it has executed a definitive agreement with NanoString for the exclusive global license to the nCounter platform for diagnostic use. The strategic transaction positions Veracyte to expand its genomic diagnostics business globally, with the ability to deliver its advanced genomic tests to physicians and their patients via hospital and clinical laboratories throughout the European Union and other parts of the world. Veracyte believes that the transaction will ultimately enable it to access a global market worth more than $40 billion for its current and pipeline products, while expanding its margins through test menu expansion on the nCounter platform. The elegantly designed, FDA-cleared, automated nCounter system is expected to enable broad testing utility through its ability to simultaneously analyze RNA, DNA or protein targets in up to 800 genes. Veracyte expects to begin offering its Envisia classifier, for use in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis diagnosis, to international customers in 2021 as a kit-based test that runs on the nCounter system. The company expects its in-development nasal swab classifier, for use in lung cancer diagnosis, to follow on the nCounter system in 2022, after the test becomes available in Veracyte’s CLIA laboratory in the United States in early 2021. The nCounter system can also run additional genomic tests developed by Veracyte, as well as by potential diagnostics or biopharmaceutical partners seeking access to global markets. As part of the transaction, Veracyte has also acquired the NanoString Prosigna breast cancer prognostic test and in-development LymphMark lymphoma subtyping assay, further expanding the company’s oncology portfolio. Press release 

Proscia and Johns Hopkins School of Medicine will collaborate on the development of computational applications that incorporate artificial intelligence (AI) to advance the practice of pathology for multiple diseases. Disease-specific AI applications help drive efficiency, productivity, and quality in tissue diagnosis. This is critical in overcoming the subjectivity inherent in traditional pathology and in addressing the world’s looming pathologist shortage. AI also has the power to tap into data unseen by the human eye to reveal clinically important tissue patterns. Training a successful AI system for pathology requires diverse, high-quality pathology data. Diverse data helps ensure an AI system is accurate across a wide variety of diseases, methods of biopsy, preparation of tissue, tissue dying procedures, and digital scanning processes. “As digital pathology continues to gain traction, AI-driven applications will advance this adoption by driving economic and clinical benefits,” Michael Bonham, Chief Medical Officer of Proscia, said in a press release. “Proscia is proud to collaborate with Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, a leader in cancer research, diagnosis, and treatment, to accelerate our pipeline of disease-specific AI applications.” Press release 


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