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Quanterix Signs Licensing Deal With J&J for Blood-Based Alzheimer's Assay Development

NEW YORK – Quanterix said after the close of the market on Monday that it has signed a licensing agreement with Johnson and Johnson subsidiary Janssen Sciences Ireland to develop blood-based assays for diagnosis and research of Alzheimer's disease.

Under the deal, Quanterix will receive nonexclusive global rights to produce and distribute research-use-only Simoa phosphorylated-tau 217 immunoassay kits that will incorporate Johnson and Johnson's p-tau 217 antibodies and assay designs. Quanterix will also be able to commercialize a laboratory-developed test based on those antibodies and designs, which will be provided through its Accelerator lab under the Lucent Diagnostics brand.

Financial and other terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The firms said blood-based biomarker tests for p-tau 217 could aid diagnosis and treatment of patients with early Alzheimer's disease, but detection currently relies on positron emission tomography or lumbar puncture for CSF biomarkers. However, those methods are expensive, invasive, and unavailable to many patients.

"Providing access to high-performing blood-based p-tau 217 assays [is] an important step as we work with several partners to build the global infrastructure for noninvasive testing of Alzheimer’s disease," Quanterix CEO Masoud Toloue said in a statement.

Quanterix is among several large diagnostics companies that are developing blood-based tests in response to recent advances in Alzheimer's disease treatment, and Alzheimer's researchers and clinicians recently included p-tau 217 among the recommended biomarkers that can be targeted using a blood-based test to diagnose Alzheimer's.