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Quest Licenses Another Epigenomics Biomarker

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) — Quest Diagnostics has licensed a biomarker for prostate cancer from Epigenomics, which it plans to use to develop a molecular diagnostic test for diagnosing the disease, Epigenomics said today.

The agreement gives Quest the rights to use the GSTP1 DNA methylation biomarker in order to both develop and market the diagnostic test, which will be performed using patient tissue samples.

Quest licensed the rights to an Epigenomics biomarker for colorectal cancer in 2008 in order to develop a test to help detect that disease.

Financial terms of the agreement were not released.

The clinical lab giant has experience in developing DNA methylation diagnostic tests. It currently offers two such tests, one for Prader-Willi syndrome and one for Angelman syndrome, both of which are neurological epigenetic disorders that may be caused by faulty DNA methylation.

The Scan

Pig Organ Transplants Considered

The Wall Street Journal reports that the US Food and Drug Administration may soon allow clinical trials that involve transplanting pig organs into humans.

'Poo-Bank' Proposal

Harvard Medical School researchers suggest people should bank stool samples when they are young to transplant when they later develop age-related diseases.

Spurred to Develop Again

New Scientist reports that researchers may have uncovered why about 60 percent of in vitro fertilization embryos stop developing.

Science Papers Examine Breast Milk Cell Populations, Cerebral Cortex Cellular Diversity, Micronesia Population History

In Science this week: unique cell populations found within breast milk, 100 transcriptionally distinct cell populations uncovered in the cerebral cortex, and more.