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DiaDexus to Buy Agilent Microarray Technology

NEW YORK, Oct 23 – Agilent Technologies said Monday it would supply custom microarray technology to genomics biomarker company DiaDexus.

DiaDexus will use the arrays for research into the molecular basis for cancer and other diseases. Financial details of the agreement were not disclosed, but the cost of Agilent’s arrays range from less than $500 to $1,000 per array.

“We’re going to decide the sequences of what genes we want to spot on the arrays and they’re going to put it on and deliver it to us,” said Mohan Iyer, vice president of DiaDexus' R&D operations and business development. ”And then we’re going to do our own experimentation with it to discover differentially expressed markers, particularly in cancer but also in other diseases.”  

Iyer said that DiaDexus evaluated other custom array manufacturers but was won over by Agilent’s quick turn around time.

“If I was to point to one feature…we chose them because they can deliver fast,” said Iyer, adding that DiaDexus was also impressed with Agilent's technology in terms of  in situ oligo arrays.

Iyer said that DiaDexus expects to begin employing the custom arrays within " a couple of months”.

DiaDexus has not yet decided whether it will exercise the option, rolled into the array deal, to use Agilent’s scanner. The company already has an Axon scanner.

“This is a piece of capital equipment that’s lying around here that we could put to use,” said Iyer. ”So we’ll investigate and evaluate whether it makes sense to switch to the Agilent equipment or not.”

Located in Santa Clara, California, DiaDexus is a genomics company dedicated to the discovery and development of novel genomic biomarkers for the detection and treatment of disease. The company is developing novel, genomically derived products to detect the early onset of disease, select the most appropriate patient-specific therapeutic regimen and predict and monitor patient response to therapy.

The company is planning to utilize its patented biomarkers to develop novel therapeutic monoclonal antibodies and therapeutic vaccines.

Agilent also recently signed microarray deals with Rosetta Inpharmatics, Paradigm Genetics, and Exelixis.

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