NEW YORK, Aug. 21 (GenomeWeb News) - A new in vitro diagnostics company created by the authors of two important breast-cancer studies will use Agilent Technologies' microarray platform in its cancer research, the firms said today.
The company, Agendia, said it hopes to use the technology to develop the first microarray-based diagnostic to "predict the aggressiveness" of breast cancer tumors.
Because researchers are not allowed to use microarrays as diagnostic tools in the United States, Agendia, based in The Netherlands, said it will handle the microarray analysis of all tumor samples in its own country.
Agendia was founded by researchers from the Netherlands Cancer Institute, in Amsterdam, who co-authored a set of landmark breast-cancer studies reported last year in the New England Journal of Medicine and Nature. The Institute, together with Rosetta Inpharmatics, a wholly owned subsidiary of Merck, performed this research using Agilent arrays and tissue samples.
In those studies, researchers identified gene-expression patterns that "correlate to aggressive tumors" as well as to tumors less likely to spread, according to Agendia. Though preliminary, that research showed that gene-expression data "has the potential" to help physicians better target cancer therapeutic regimens.
Agendia said it plans to develop microarray-based tests for a host of diseases beside breast cancer.