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Illumina, Chinese Firm Partner on NGS System for Genetic Disease Dx

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Illumina and China firm Boai NKY Medical Holdings have partnered to develop next-generation sequencing-based hereditary disease tests in China.

Under the agreement announced on Tuesday, NKY and Illumina will develop an NGS system based on Illumina's MiniSeq system and NKY's library prep kits and analysis software to develop in vitro diagnostics for hereditary kidney disease. The goal is to develop a platform that will meet regulatory criteria of China's National Medical Products Administration.

NKY is Tianjin-based manufacturer of polyvinylpyrrolidone, a water-soluble polymer that is used in a range of pharmaceutical, industrial, and cosmetic applications. But recently, it has also formed a precision medicine business arm.

"The molecular diagnosis of hereditary diseases has three major applications," Huasheng Fang, chairman of NKY, said in a statement. First, "it could be a good auxiliary diagnosis for certain diseases; second, it could be used as a screening method for high-risk populations with a family history of hereditary diseases." Lastly, it could provide guidance to families, who have given birth to a child with congenital disease, on their reproductive health, he said.