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Leukocare, Trillium Partner on Sepsis Assay Development

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Leukocare and Trillium Diagnostics today announced a deal to develop and market Leukocare's method for detecting inflammatory activity using circulating cell-free DNA.

Trillium will use the method to develop a commercial assay for diagnosing sepsis, they said. Under the terms of the deal, Leukocare grants Trillium an exclusive, royalty-bearing license to its patent covering the technology and know-how for measuring the quantity of cf-DNA to develop a commercial in vitro diagnostic assay.

Trillium aims to create a cf-DNA test as a "simple and cost effective" tool that healthcare professionals can use to obtain clinically relevant data on patients who are suspected of having sepsis. The companies said that they expect to finish developing the assay and market it in two years.

In a statement Bruce Davis, president and CEO of Bangor, Maine-based Trillium said that a prognostic assay for sepsis "clearly would fulfill an unmet medical need to help identify sepsis patients at an early stage and to initiate rapid treatment actions.

"cf-DNA is an important addition to our patented infection/sepsis diagnostic assays of neutrophil CD64 expression (Leuko64 assay) and soluble CD163 (Macro163 assay)," he continued. "We hope these three assays used in parallel will provide unparalleled sensitivity and specificity in diagnosis."

Financial and other terms were not disclosed.

Leukocare is based in Munich, Germany and provides technologies for stabilizing proteins. Trillium focuses on proteomic and cytomics methods to better understand the immunologic response to infection and sepsis.