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Regeneron Genetics Center Partners With Multiple Sclerosis Non-Profit on Sequencing Project

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Non-profit group Accelerated Cure Project for Multiple Sclerosis (ACP) announced today that it has partnered with the Regeneron Genetics Center (RGC) to sequence the exomes of DNA from MS patients in order to advance research on the disease.

RGC is a subsidiary of Regeneron Pharmaceuticals founded in 2014 to use genomic analysis to improve drug development and patient care through partnerships with academic, government, and integrated medical systems.

Under the terms of the deal, RGC will use its automated sample preparation, data processing, and cloud-based informatics technologies to sequence the full exomes of all DNA samples in ACP's open-access biospecimen repository. The repository includes samples from over 3,200 individuals with MS and related diseases such as neuromyelitis optica, as well as healthy controls.

ACP will then make available the exome data — along with associated patient data such as medical, epidemiological, and treatment data, and neurologist documentation of diagnostic and monitoring tests — to qualified investigators for further study.

Additional terms of the alliance were not disclosed.

"Whole-exome sequencing will add valuable new information to the genome-wide risk gene dataset that has already been generated from the DNA samples in the ACP Repository by the International MS Genetics Consortium," ACP President and CEO Robert McBurney said in a statement. "Combining this new genetic information with the extensive phenotypic information collected for each sample donor will undoubtedly lead to new insights on the causes and mechanisms of multiple sclerosis."

Last year, ACP signed on BC Platforms to manage, expand, and diversify its biorepository using a new system for analyzing and viewing biobank genomic and clinical data.