NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) — Sensigen has acquired an option from the University of Michigan to exclusively license a set of epigenetic biomarkers that can detect and monitor lupus, the company said this week.
The technology covered under the license is a panel of biomarkers of epigenetic variations of genes and related research assays linked to lupus, the company said.
These biomarkers were developed by Bruce Richardson, professor of medicine at the University of Michigan and the chief of rheumatology at Ann Arbor Veterans Hospital, who “discovered that the levels of methylation of certain genes were closely associated with the onset of lupus,” the company said.
Current methods for monitoring and detecting the autoimmune disease measure levels of antibodies and proteins known to fluctuate in the blood.
Richardson said that an assay using this panel and based on Sensigen’s AttoSense “has the potential to achieve an unprecedented level of diagnostic sensitivity and specificity” for diagnosing and managing lupus.
Financial terms of the agreement were not released.