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SenzaGen, AstraZeneca Partner on Genomic Test for Respiratory Irritants

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – SenzaGen announced today that it has partnered with AstraZeneca to develop a genomic test to differentiate respiratory allergens from irritants to help with drug discovery.

The companies will use SenzaGen's genomic allergen rapid detection platform called GARD, which measures genetic biomarkers of immune reactions to predict risk of hypersensitivity, and AstraZeneca's inhaled substance libraries to develop a genomic signature that can be used to identify molecules that cause respiratory tract irritancy.

"During our research and drug discovery activities, it is important to be able to identify and mitigate potential toxicological issues as early as possible to ensure our novel candidate drugs have the right safety profile for patients," Jorrit Hornberg, director of discovery safety at AstraZeneca, said in a statement. "We aim to develop a novel method to investigate whether novel drug-like molecules induce similar genomic signatures as known respiratory irritants. That could ultimately be applied to steer away from a potential irritancy hazard and enable the discovery of safer drugs for patients."

The partnership is expected to run for 12 to 18 months. Financial terms were not disclosed.