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Sequenom, SNUH Collaborate on ctDNA Study

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Sequenom has entered into a clinical collaboration with Seoul National University Hospital to profile circulating cell-free tumor DNA in blood, the firm announced today. 

The partners will conduct studies targeting several hundred patients across 10 cancer types, they said. The collaboration is the first by Sequenom with a leading medical center in Asia to target cancer, and "[a]mong other objectives, this study will enable us to comprehensively analyze the genomic alterations concordance between tissue and blood in different cancers," Sequenom CMO Daniel Grosu said in a statement. 

Sequenom is developing a research-use-only assay initially focused on detecting and molecularly profiling late-stage non-hematologic malignancies in instances when tissue biopsies are not feasible. The assay will analyze more than 100 cancer genes that are included in professional society guidelines, linked to targeted therapies in clinical trials, or are part of well-documented cancer pathways, the company said. 

In August it announced a similar deal with the University of California, San Diego. The firm announced its intentions to develop a liquid biopsy assay at the start of the year.