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Singlera, Fudan University Partner on Cancer Biomarker Project

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Genetic testing firm Singlera Genomics announced today that it has formed an alliance with Fudan University's Taizhou Health Science Institute to analyze samples from large cohort of Chinese volunteers to identify biomarkers of early-stage cancer.

In 2007, the institute began collecting phenotypic information, health records, and more than 1.2 million biospecimens from 200,000 initially healthy Chinese individuals. With that effort completed, Taizhou Health Science Institute and Singlera will now use the company's proprietary target sequencing, methylation analysis, and bioinformatics technologies to analyze biofluids collected from individuals who went on to develop cancer.

The effort will focus on esophageal, gastric, colorectal, lung, and breast cancer, with the goal of developing early-detection tests.

"Singlera Genomics has leading sequencing and bioinformatics expertise, outstanding R&D research teams in the United States and China, patented methylation sequencing technologies, [and] a seasoned management team," Li Jin, a Fudan researcher and leader of the cohort project, said in a statement. "The signing of this strategic collaboration agreement will equip us with advanced technologies and accelerate the development of new approaches for disease prevention and treatments."

Specific terms of the arrangement — which comes about six months after Singlera partnered with Yale University to test its technology for noninvasive prenatal testing — were not disclosed.