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NEW YORK – Liquid biopsy firm Lexent Bio on Thursday announced a non-exclusive partnership with Illumina to develop an in vitro diagnostic kit for cancer.

Under the terms of the agreement, Lexent will develop its Confera Dx assay, a next-generation sequencing-based kit for monitoring response to therapy or minimal residual disease in patients with certain solid tumors, to run on Illumina's NextSeq 550Dx system. Lexent will be responsible for obtaining the necessary regulatory approvals and for commercialization.

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Nature News reports that recent proposed changes to the US National Science Foundation have raised concerns about a shift away from the agency's focus on basic research.

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