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DioGenix, Fast Forward Partner on NGS-based MDx for MS

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – DioGenix announced today a collaboration with Fast Forward to develop a molecular diagnostic test for multiple sclerosis.

As part of the deal, Fast Forward, a subsidiary of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, will provide DioGenix $500,000 to expand its ongoing clinical trial for MSPrecise, a diagnostic test based on next-generation sequencing to measure genetic mutations in the adaptive immune system by analyzing B cells isolated from cerebral spinal fluid.

By providing a measurement of changes in B cell DNA, MSPrecise would support the current standard of care for MS diagnosis, DioGenix said, adding that the currently available test measures only the presence of immunoglobin G proteins in CSF.

DioGenix will use the funding to evaluate the effectiveness of its approach in blood samples. The Gaithersburg, Md.-based molecular diagnostic firm said that the validation of a DNA blood signature for MS is crucial in its plans to develop a neuroimmune panel that can distinguish MS from other immune-mediated neurological diseases with similar biological features.

"Our collaboration with Fast Forward will allow us to more rapidly develop new tests that can have a profound impact on the lives of people living with MS," DioGenix CEO Larry Tiffany said in a statement. "With this important funding, we can extend the utility of our already reliable CSF-based MSPrecise assay into blood, providing an additional option for the use of our test by clinicians as part of their routine work-up of patients who are struggling with non-specific neurological symptoms."

Financial and other terms of the deal were not disclosed.

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