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AbbVie to Use Myriad CDx to Support PARP Inhibitor Development

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Myriad Genetics announced today that it has signed an expanded companion diagnostics research partnership agreement with AbbVie. The drug developer will use Myriad's myChoice HRD companion diagnostic and a menu of tumor tests to identify non-small cell lung cancer patients who would be likely to respond to AbbVie's PARP inhibitor, veliparib, in combination with chemotherapy.

MyChoice is a homologous recombination deficiency test that can detect when a tumor has lost the ability to repair double-stranded DNA breaks, resulting in increased susceptibility to platinum drugs or PARP inhibitors.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

This deal expands Myriad's research relationship with AbbVie. The two companies first collaborated in 2010 when AbbVie agreed to use Myriad's standard BRACAnalysis test for assessing germline mutations from cancer patients' blood samples as a companion diagnostic in clinical trials for veliparib. They expanded that relationship in November 2014 when the drug developer said it would use Myriad's Tumor BRACAnalysis CDx in Phase III trials of veliparib, hoping to identify a greater number of patients who have BRCA mutations and who will benefit from treatment.

"As a company committed to innovation in the field of oncology, this collaboration with AbbVie enables us to use our proprietary companion diagnostics to advance care for patients with lung cancer," said Myriad's Chief Scientific Officer Jerry Lanchbury in a statement. "If we are successful, our companion diagnostics will identify more patients who may benefit from treatment with the combination of veliparib and chemotherapy."

Myriad also announced this week that it has entered into a strategic research collaboration with Tesaro and Merck. The two pharmaceutical companies will use Myriad's myChoice HRD companion diagnostic in a clinical trial of an investigational drug therapy combining Tesaro's PARP inhibitor, niraparib, with Merck's anti-PD-1 therapy, pembrolizumab (commercially sold as Keytruda).