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Saga Diagnostics, SensID to Codevelop Control Reagents for Cancer Mutation Detection

NEW YORK –Swedish personalized cancer genomics startup Saga Diagnostics and Rostock, Germany-based SensID said on Wednesday that they have partnered to develop control reagents for cancer mutation detection.

The European collaborators will use SensID's controls with Saga's digital PCR-based Sagasafe technology, which can detect and quantify circulating tumor DNA in cancer patients at ultra-low allelic frequencies (AF).

SensID develops, manufactures, and markets quality controls and reference materials for clinical genomics and DNA diagnostics.

"Developing and manufacturing controls can only be done accurately and [reproducibly] if the [quality control] methods 100 percent fit the finalized product," Bjoern Nowack, CEO and cofounder of SensID, said in a statement. "With the AF going down to the demand of Saga, we need a different technology to run our [quality control] the way it should be run."

Financial details of the agreement were not disclosed.

"In order to speed up the ability of our customers to verify our ultrasensitive mutation detection kits and services, we require reliable third-party reference controls that go well below 0.1 percent AFs," Lao Saal, CEO and cofounder of Lund-based Saga Diagnostics, added. 

Saga previously signed agreements with French pharmaceutical firm Servier in January to perform liquid biopsy testing on cancer patients enrolled in clinical studies.