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Gene Express, AbaStar to Collaborate on MDx Tests for Neurological Disorders

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Gene Express today said that it has signed a definitive agreement to collaborate with AbaStar MDx on the development of biomarker tests for neurological and psychological disorders.

Under the agreement, AbaStar has licensed Gene Express’ SEM Center and StaRT-PCR technology. It will combine the PCR technology with its own RNA biomarker signatures to develop diagnostic tests that run from a blood sample and provide results in a day.

“StaRT-PCR uses known quantities of Internal Standard for each gene to provide quantitative results and standardized PCR gene expression data,” said AbaStar President and CEO Terry Osborn. “Thus during the product development process the diseased patient and normal subject gene expression data can be put into a standardized database that can be leveraged for use with future clinical trials to refine the molecular signatures and for future products.”

The firms expect to collaborate over the next several years on developing and commercializing the tests. They said that they will create several hundred gene standards, screen gene expression profiles, and create validated standardized mixtures of internal standards for clinical trial use.

The partners estimated that the overall value of the pact could potentially exceed $100 million.

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