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NX Prenatal Partners With NxGEN MDx to Develop Test for Preterm Birth

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Molecular diagnostics firm NX Prenatal said today that it has partnered with NxGEN MDx to develop and commercialize its exosome-based blood tests for assessing women's risk of preterm birth.

Louisville, Kentucky-based NX Prenatal uses multiple-reaction monitoring mass spec to measure exosome-bound proteins linked to preterm delivery. In a study published in March in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, the company presented several three-protein panels that identified women who would go on to deliver before 34 weeks with sensitivity and specificity of above 80 percent when measured at 10 to 12 weeks gestation.

According to NX Prenatal, preterm births occur in as many as one in eight US pregnancies and cost the healthcare system roughly $26 billion per year.

"Our combined efforts are designed to fulfill the industry's stated goal of early identification of which pregnant women are at increased risk for delivering prematurely, and NX Prenatal has demonstrated that its technology uniquely holds the potential to achieve this breakthrough," NxGEN MDx CEO Alan Mack said in a statement. "This new generation of diagnostics is complementary to our current suite of tests which help families and their physicians plan for healthy pregnancy outcomes."