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Clinical Data to Develop Dx to Predict Response Rate for Rituximab

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) — Clinical Data plans to develop a molecular diagnostic aimed at identifying patients likely to respond to a monoclonal antibody made by Genentech/Biogen-Idec and Roche
The deal calls for Clinical Data to measure patient response to rituximab, which is used to treat non-Hodgkins lymphoma and rheumatoid arthritis. The company reported yesterday that it has signed a licensing agreement for “an extensive portfolio of patents” toward this goal, but would not disclose the name of the licenser.
Clinical Data said the diagnostic will employ a variation in the FCGRIIIA gene, which will have a greater than 90-percent specificity in predicting response to rituximab in NHL.
The company also expects that this gene will be useful in measuring response to other monoclonal antibodies used to treat Crohn’s disease and other inflammatory disorders.

Genentech recently licensed a gene map of Crohn’s disease from Genizon Biosciences.



CD said it expects to begin working on the rituximab diagnostic in early 2007.

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