NEW YORK – Chinese precision oncology firm Genetron Health said Thursday that it has entered an exclusive licensing agreement with ImmuQuad Biotechnologies to develop and commercialize Seq-MRD, a diagnostic assay for the detection and monitoring of minimal residual disease in select hematologic cancers.
Under the agreement, Genetron gains exclusive, global rights to research, develop, commercialize, and manufacture MRD tests using Seq-MRD, which is an immunogenomics-based method for residual disease detection developed using ImmuQuad's proprietary platform.
ImmuQuad is eligible to receive high single-digit royalties on product sales for 10 years following commercialization. Genetron has also made a minority equity investment in in its new Hangzhou, China-based partner.
Other terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
According to a statement from the two companies, Seq-MRD offers higher sensitivity and less required sample quantity than other approaches. Genetron plans to conduct further validation of the technology in hematologic cancers including multiple myeloma, chronic lymphoid leukemia, and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
"This licensing agreement accelerates our R&D expertise in the field of MRD testing for hematologic cancers and strengthens our comprehensive diagnostics offering," Sizhen Wang, Genetron's cofounder and CEO, said in a statement.
Outside of MRD, ImmuQuad also believes its immune profiling platform has potential for early detection and drug discovery, and the firm is using Genetron’s equity investment to support active R&D plans in these areas.
According to Wang, the companies "plan on working together to advance their immune profiling platform and broadening commercial opportunities in drug discovery in China and other key markets."