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BG Medicine, Framingham Heart Researchers Partner on Cardio Tests

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – BG Medicine has entered into a partnership with the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute and Boston University to work with researchers on the Framingham Heart Study to develop new blood tests for heart disease and stroke.

Under the new initiative, called the Systems Approach to biomarker Research in Cardiovascular Disease, the partners will aim to identify and validate new biomarkers for heart disease. Part of the biomarker research will be conducted under a five-year Cooperative Research and Development Agreement between BG Medicine and the researchers.

The partners intend to study roughly 1,000 blood biomarkers. They will use frozen blood samples, imaging studies, and other medical test results collected over the years from more than 7,000 FHS participants to identify biomarkers not only associated with heart disease but also metabolic syndrome and related risk factors.

The collaboration will utilize BG's biomarker discovery platform, which automates measurement, analysis, characterization, and interpretation of proteins and small non-protein biological molecules collected from bodily fluids.

"The Framingham Heart Study is one of NIH's shining stars — during its 60-year history, it has yielded some of the most important basic knowledge about risk factors for cardiovascular disease, such as high blood cholesterol and high blood pressure," NHLBI Director Elizabeth Nabel said in a statement. "This new agreement takes our research to a whole new level.

Imagine having a simple blood test to tell us if a patient is at high risk for a heart attack or stroke — we could do so much more to prevent or delay these often debilitating and deadly diseases."

The collaboration with Waltham, Mass.-based BG is the first time the Framingham Heart Study has partnered with a commercial company on a CRADA project.