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Cofactor Genomics, NCI Partner to Validate RNA-Based Immune Profiling Assay

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Cofactor Genomics announced today that it has partnered with the National Cancer Institute (NCI), in addition to agreements with three other unnamed academic and pharma groups, to demonstrate the clinical utility of Cofactor's RNA-based immune-profiling assay, Cofactor Paragon.

Under the terms of their material transfer agreement, the collaborators will use clinical specimens from several of NCI's clinical trials to validate the Paragon assay.

Cofactor's research collaborations will focus on applying Paragon to further understand the immune profiles of patients with conditions including sarcoma, prostate cancer, lung cancer, breast cancer, and bladder cancer as initial case studies.

"There is a need for advanced assays which enable thorough molecular tumor profiling to better predict and interpret patient response," James Gully, head of the immunotherapy section of the Genitourinary Malignancies Branch at the NCI Center for Cancer Research, said in a statement.

Cofactor will process the majority of the studies' samples in its St Louis-based laboratories, which include a CAP-accredited RNA sequencing facility. The data and feedback from the studies will allow Cofactor to shift the assay to an off-the-shelf sequencing kit, with complementary cloud-based informatics.

The firm believes that its approach will improve existing technologies by delivering RNA-based data in a simplified report.

Additional terms of the deal were not disclosed.

In September 2017, Cofactor Genomics raised $18 million in Series A funding.