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Genisphere, Lankenau Institute Expand MiRNA Deal Aimed at IBD

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) –Genisphere and the Lankenau Institute for Medical Research today said that they have expanded their research collaboration aimed at identifying microRNA biomarkers to include Crohn's Disease and other inflammatory bowel disorders.

The deal builds on an existing partnership covering miRNA biomarkers for ulcerative colitis.

The goal of the ongoing collaboration, Genisphere and Lankenau said, is to develop a diagnostic test to shed light on how patients are being correctly or incorrectly diagnosed in their respective diseases and to provide information on how they are responding to treatment.

"We want to identify biomarker panels that can classify the various forms of IBD," Bob Getts, CSO of Genisphere, said in a statement. "From this we can develop a tool that will help to rapidly and accurately identify the patient's condition so personalized treatment may be administered as soon as possible."

The partners will use the Affymetrix GeneChip miRNA Array to identify the miRNA biomarkers and develop new diagnostic tools. Affy and Genisphere inked a deal in the fall under which Affy is offering Genishpere's miRNA reagents for use with the GeneChip miRNA 2.0 Arrays.

Lankenau President and CEO George Prendergast said in a statement, "What started out as interaction to improve a test has led us to think about how we might improve medicines through applying principles that the Genisphere and Affymetrix microRNA detection platform allows. We are now looking at applications in cervical cancer, wound healing and other areas well beyond IBD."

Financial and other terms of the alliance were not disclosed.

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