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UK Awards Consortium £850K to Validate ALS Epigenetic Biomarkers

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) — Innovate UK has awarded a UK consortium £850,000 ($1.3 million) to validate epigenetic signatures in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. 

The consortium is led by Oxford BioDynamics and includes Oxford University's Nuffield department of clinical neurosciences and Chronos Therapeutics. The project is worth a total of about £1.3 million, Oxford BioDynamics said.

The company will use its EpiSwitch technology to validate epigenetic signatures that are anticipated to have use in diagnosing patients and providing information about disease progression and whether a new drug is effective. A test developed from the collaboration would be able to detect the biomarkers directly from a patient's blood.

Oxford BioDynamics CEO Hoyer Millar said in a statement that the funding from Innovate UK, formerly called the Technology Strategy Board, "will help further advance [the company's] unique technology biomarker platform built by our university spinout and used today by a number of US pharma and Asian healthcare clients."