NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Molecular diagnostics firm AutoGenomics and personalized healthcare company Genomas have signed an agreement to develop genetic tests and DNA-guided diagnostic systems to aid in the selection of statins to improve treatment of heart disease, obesity, and diabetes.
Through this collaboration the companies hope to develop tests and decision support systems together that will help doctors "manage statins, [and] prescribe and dose these drugs on a DNA-guided, personalized basis to more effectively guide the therapy for each patient," the partners said today.
According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, currently there are 71 million Americans with high levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and 43 million are prescribed statins to reduce their LDL. These drugs, however, can cause ill effects in some patients, such as muscle aches, weakness, and cramps, which if gone unmanaged can lead to serious muscle injury.
The tests that Genomas and AutoGenomics plan to advance will identify patients who are likely to experience statin-induced muscle pain or are at risk of experiencing muscle injury. The companies are planning to market Genomas' SINM PhyzioType System for optimizing treatments for lipid disorders on AutoGenomics' Infiniti multiplex genetic testing platform.
"Growing evidence indicates that genetics determines who develops muscle complaints with statins," Paul Thompson, chief of cardiology at the Henry Low Heart Center of Hartford Hospital, said in a statement. "The partnership will allow us to pursue the final implementation studies of the multi-gene biomarker system to personalize cardiovascular therapy."
Genomas is located on the campus of Hartford Hospital, and the company works with the hospital and other institutions to develop its personalized medicine tests.