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TGen, Ceres Form Collaboration for Mass Spec-based Biomarker Discovery, Development

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NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – The Translational Genomics Research Institute and Ceres Nanosciences said this week that they have formed a development collaboration for clinical proteomics research.

The collaboration focuses on incorporating Ceres' NanoTrap technology into TGen's automated mass spectrometry workflows with the aim of discovery and developing protein biomarkers for conditions including cancer and infectious disease.

Ceres' NanoTraps consist of hydrogel nanoparticles with porous outer shells housing chemical affinity baits to various analytes. According to the company, the particles allow researchers to target specific low-abundance proteins, concentrating them up to 1,000-fold while excluding interfering high-abundance proteins.

The collaboration builds on previous work between TGen, Ceres, and George Mason University where the NanoTrap technology was developed, which has employed the particles for mass spec-based biomarker discovery. GMU announced its role in the TGen collaboration in May.

"There is great patient demand and clinical utility for new, groundbreaking diagnostic tests for the early detection of cancer and other life-threatening diseases," Ross Dunlap, CEO of Ceres, said in a statement. "The biggest challenge to delivering these tests is building the scale and efficiency required to make these new tests cost-effective. Speed and throughput coupled with even higher analytical sensitivities than have ever been achieved before is the key. The collaboration between Ceres and TGen is already addressing this challenge by integrating advanced automation solutions, analytical platforms, and sample processing technologies."

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