Cedars-Sinai Medical Center to Operate as Roche Molecular Center of Excellence

Roche Diagnostics forged a partnership with Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles for the hospital’s molecular diagnostics laboratory to operate as a Roche Molecular Center of Excellence for the next 5 years. The strategic deal is designed to advance new methods in molecular diagnostics testing and personalized predictive treatment. The Cedars-Sinai laboratory will be one of the first centers of excellence to provide physicians and patients some of the latest and most advanced molecular technologies. “Roche is very pleased to welcome Cedars-Sinai Medical Center into the Molecular Center of Excellence alliance,” said Whitney Green, senior vice president of molecular diagnostics at Roche Diagnostics Corporation. “We value their expertise in implementing molecular technologies in the advancement of personalized medicine.”

Abbott Expands Agreement with GSK for Cancer Companion Dx

Abbott expanded its existing agreement with GlaxoSmithKline Biologicals for developing an additional companion diagnostic test in GSK’s cancer immunotherapy research program. Under the expanded agreement, Abbott will develop a polymerase chain reaction test for use on the Abbott m2000rt instrument to screen non-small cell lung cancer tumors for the expression of the PRAME antigen. The existing agreements between the two companies, reached in 2009 and 2010, called for development of PCR-based companion diagnostic tests by Abbott to screen for the expression of MAGE-A3 antigen.

Dako and Bristol-Myers Forge Pharmacodiagnostic Partnership

Dako and Bristol-Myers Squibb have inked an agreement to develop pharmacodiagnostic tests in an effort to identify patients who are more likely to respond to drugs being developed by Bristol-Myers Squibb. “This alliance heralds the intentions of both companies to work closely together to develop new diagnostic tests linked to drugs for the higher purpose of identifying the patients most likely to respond to treatment,” said Lars Holmkvist, CEO of Dako. The agreement builds on a similar deal between the two firms reached in 2008.

DxTerity and Caliper Collaborate on Tests for LabChip Dx Platform

DxTerity Diagnostics and Caliper Life Sciences forged a deal allowing researchers to perform DxTerity’s NEAT multiplex diagnostic assays on Caliper’s LabChip Dx instrument platform. “DxTerity's simple and robust NEAT assays, combined with the ease-of-use of the Caliper LabChip Dx system, will eliminate significant barriers to the use of multiplex genomic tests in the clinical laboratory and lead to major gains in personalized medicine,” said Bob Terbrueggen, president and CEO of DxTerity Diagnostics. DxTerity's NEAT assays analyze and detect SNPs directly from blood or formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissue. The LabChip Dx system is based on Caliper’s patented microfluidic separation technology and enables high-throughput multiplex analysis for discovery and validation of nucleic acid and protein biomarkers.

Roche Buys Verum Diagnostica, Builds Comprehensive Coagulation Testing Portfolio

Roche acquired Verum Diagnostica GmbH, a leading company in platelet function testing. With the purchase, Roche plans to use Verum Diagnostica’s platelet function testing technology to further develop its coagulation testing product line in North America beyond physician offices and outpatient services. “With this acquisition we gain an innovative and unique platelet function testing solution that has the potential to set new standards of patient care in this area and perfectly complements our new coagulation portfolio,” said Colin Brown, head of Roche Professional Diagnostics. The acquisition allows Roche to move forward with its plans to develop a new full line of coagulation analyzers for hospital and reference laboratories, set to launch in 2014.