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The new company will be focused entirely on hepatitis B, although officials previously said that Tekmira's other non-HBV RNAi programs would continue to advance.

The new assay expands a portfolio of viral load monitoring tests for the Cobas 6800 and 8800 systems.

The company provided updates for its hepatitis C and Alport syndrome candidates, which are both set to enter Phase II testing this year.

The company also recently paid $7 million for an exclusive option on an undisclosed RNAi technology and related intellectual property.

The data also point to viral load reductions regardless of disease genotype, extent of patient liver fibrosis, or failure with other treatments.

The company also disclosed that it intends to continue working on its non-HBV RNAi drugs that have entered human testing, but was less clear about earlier-stage ones.

The news marks a key milestone for Tekmira, which announced earlier this month that it would merge with OnCore Biopharma to become an HBV-focused drug developer.

The news marks the latest setback for the company, which came under fire late last year over disappointing clinical results on the drug.

Following the transaction, hepatitis B will become Tekmira's top priority, although the company said it will continue work on its other RNAi programs.

The real-time PCR assay is designed to detect and identify HIV, hepatitis B virus, and hepatitis C virus in donations of human whole blood and blood components.

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