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Wisconsin Hospitals to Offer Celera's Cardiovascular Genetic Test

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb news) – Aurora Health Care of Milwaukee, Wis., will work with Celera to offer genetic cardiovascular tests under a new collaboration, Celera said yesterday.

Celera said that the agreement makes Aurora "the first health care provider in Wisconsin and one of the first in the nation" to offer the company's test for a variant in the KIF6 gene that has been shown to indicate increased risk for heart disease.

The company said that untreated carriers of the KIF6 gene variant have a 50 percent to 55 percent greater risk of heart attacks than non-carriers.

Celera and Aurora also have agreed to "explore" research studies that could validate additional genetic markers for cardiovascular disease risk and treatment.

Aurora will first offer the KIF6 test as part of its Cardiovascular Services group, but it is "expected to be useful" for primary care physicians as well, Celera said.

Aurora has 13 hospitals and over 100 clinics in eastern Wisconsin, and it is affiliated with more than 3,400 physicians.

Masood Akhtar, president of Aurora Cardiovascular Services, said in a statement that "genetic testing will allow our physicians to more readily identify patients who are at elevated risk for cardiovascular disease and to determine the most appropriate form of treatment."

Financial terms of the agreement were not released.

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