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Carmentix, U of Melbourne Launch Prenatal Biomarkers Initiative

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Singapore-based company Carmentix Private Limited and Australia's University of Melbourne announced a new initiative last week to discover biomarkers related to preterm birth.

"Carmentix is excited to begin this collaboration, as we are keen to further develop the biomarkers discovered on our unique data mining platform," CEO Nir Arbel said in a statement.

In a retrospective clinical study, the organizations will collaborate to validate new and existing biomarkers that might contribute to a panel assay for use in assessing risk of preterm birth. The partners said that the protein-based biomarker panel might provide results as early as 20 weeks into gestation.

Preterm birth affects approximately one in every 10 babies born each year in the US, and can lead to physical and developmental impairments.

University of Melbourne researcher Harry Georgiou will lead the study while Megan Di Quinzio will lead statistical analysis. In 2014, researchers led by Georgiou published a study in BJOG identifying proteomic biomarkers in the cervicovaginal fluid predicting spontaneous preterm labor.

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