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New Releases: Jul 6, 2011


MicroRNA firm Sistemic last week launched a new Companion Biomarker program, which is an extension of the company's suite of SistemRNA drug discovery and development tools.

Under the new Companion Biomarker program, the company hopes to "simplify the benefits of miRNA analysis and profiling to support timely decision making within clinical research," Sistemic said in a statement.

According to the firm, drug discovery companies will be able to utilize multiple miRNA biomarkers to determine the efficacy of targeted drugs and evaluate potential companion biomarker strategies.

The company's website describes its so called "Sistemic methodology," which involves miRNA profiling or fingerprinting to provide information on cell biology; proprietary algorithms that analyze changes to miRNAs within cells and model these changes in a set of "key miRNAs;" and detailed contextual analysis associated with the key miRNAs.

The company then validates the expression patterns of key miRNAs via quantitative PCR.

In the area of drug development, Glasgow, UK-based Sistemic has used the same concept of miRNA fingerprinting to launch products such as SistemRNA, which helps drug developers understand the impact of therapeutics on the cell system; SistemTox, which allows companies to gauge the predictive and mechanistic toxicology of a given compound; and SistemKB, which guides firms in repurposing compounds in their pipeline.

Sistemic's Companion Biomarker program will likely combine these offerings. "The system will use the robustness and specificity of miRNA to identify highly discriminatory biomarkers which, in turn, will guide patient prognosis, the selection of appropriate drug treatment, and monitoring of drug response," the company said.