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Duke, LabCorp Form Personalized Medicine JV

By a GenomeWeb staff reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Duke University and Laboratory Corporation of America announced today that they have formed a joint venture focused on commercializing biomarkers for pharmacogenomic applications.

The joint venture will be known as The Biomarker Factory and combine Duke's efforts in biomarker discovery and validation with LabCorp's expertise in developing and marketing diagnostic and lab tools. The goal of the new JV is to "speed the translation of newly discovered biomarkers into widely available clinical tools that can measure individual therapeutic responses, predict disease progression, and evaluate any number of biologic or disease-causing processes," the partners said in a statement.

The Biomarker Factory will make use of Duke's collection of biological samples — numbering in the hundreds of thousands — and an infrastructure already in place in a large Duke-led epidemiology study called MURDOCK, which is in the process of recruiting 50,000 people into a registry. The JV also will utilize LabCorp's biorepository that is being developed to discover and validate biomarkers in human disease.

"The Biomarker Factory will position Duke and LabCorp on an end-to-end pathway from the research bench to the physician office," David King, chairman and CEO of LabCorp, said in a statement. "The Biomarker Factory will contribute greatly to the realization of the promise of individualized medicine and will assist physicians in understanding how to use newly developed biomarkers to improve patient outcomes and reduce healthcare costs."

Financial and further terms of the alliance were not disclosed.

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