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Micronoma, NYU Partner to Develop Microbial Biomarkers of Lung Cancer

NEW YORK — Micronoma said on Thursday that it has partnered with New York University on a National Cancer Institute-funded project to identify microbial biomarkers that can be used to predict non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and its chance of recurrence.

The grant was awarded to NYU Grossman School of Medicine researcher Leopoldo Segal to identify microbial and host biomarkers, obtained from blood and lower airway samples of patients with lung nodules, that can predict early-stage NSCLC, according to its abstract. Potential biomarkers will be used to develop diagnostics — including ones based on next-generation sequencing, metabolite measurement, and custom-made NanoString panels — that can identify patients at high risk of NSCLC and disease recurrence following complete surgical resection.

The five-year grant is worth $703,424 in its first year.

Micronoma said that it is currently working with NYU Langone Health to identify the blood-based biomarkers. The San Diego-based company said it could potentially commercialize a test under CLIA regulations later this year based on its OncobiotaLUNG microbiome-based liquid biopsy platform.

Earlier this year, Micronoma received breakthrough device designation from the US Food and Drug Administration for an OncobiotaLUNG assay designed to categorize lung nodules into high risk or low risk of malignancy with a blood draw. The company was founded in 2019 by University of California, San Diego scientists to advance findings from their reanalysis of The Cancer Genome Atlas.