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Epigenomics' Q1 Revenues Drop, Loss Rises

By a GenomeWeb staff reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – German molecular diagnostics firm Epigenomics today reported that its first-quarter 2010 revenues fell 50 percent and its net loss increased 8 percent as a key partner launched a test based on the firm's technology.

Epigenomics brought in total revenues of around €600,000 ($764,000) for the three-month period ended March 31, compared to €1.2 million for the first quarter of 2009. The firm said that the decrease was due to the completion of work under several collaboration agreements, and last year it had revenues from biomarker R&D services, which it did not repeat in Q1 2010.

Its net loss for the quarter was €2.6 million, up from €2.4 million for the first quarter of 2009.

The firm's R&D expenses increased around 6 percent to €1.9 million from €1.8 million, while its SG&A spending jumped 15 percent to €1.3 million from nearly €1.1 million.

Epigenomics said that during the first quarter it focused on its transformation to a product-driven company. One of its partners, Quest Diagnostics, launched in the US in late 2009 its laboratory-developed blood test ColoVantage for aiding in the detection of colorectal cancer. That launch followed the introduction of Abbott's blood test for colorectal cancer in Europe and Asia/Pacific under the brand name Abbott RealTime mS9 in late 2009. Both tests are based on Epigenomics' Septin9 biomarker.

In addition, the firm has been expanding the number of lab partners in Europe offering its own colorectal cancer test, Epi proColon.

It also will launch by mid-year its lung cancer test, the Epi proLung BL Reflex Assay, in Europe.

Epigenomics finished the quarter with €44.3 million in cash. In March, the firm raised €30.3 million in net proceeds through a placement of 14.7 million shares.

Epigenomics said that it expects to report full-year 2010 revenue of at least €5 million, "with the potential to double in each of the following two years towards achieving profitability by the end of 2012 at the earliest."

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