NEW YORK, July 24 - Egeen International is collaborating with Prediction Sciences on a gene and SNP-linked pharmacogenomics study for the antidepressant Celexa, the companies said today.
The study is the first step in an attempt to create a gene- and SNP-based diagnostics panel designed to help predict an individual's response to a number of different antidepressants, said Cornelius Diamond, director of the pharmacogenomics group at San Diego-based Prediction Sciences.
Egeen, headquartered in Redwood City, Calif., will enroll patients in the former Eastern Bloc nation of Estonia who are now taking or have taken in the past Celexa, made by Forest Laboratories. To evaluate the genomic profile of responders and nonresponders, the company will genotype the patients and, taking advantage of its relationship with the Estonian government, get access to the country's state-sponsored gene bank, said Kalev Kask, CEO of Egeen. He said the study would take 24 months.
Kask called the collaboration an "early stage revenue-generating service deal" for Egeen, which he said will win milestone payments and royalties from Prediction Sciences for sales of a diagnostic product.