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Biocartis, Exploit Technologies Ink MDx Assay Development Deal

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Biocartis announced today that it has extended its partnership with Exploit Technologies (ETPL) — the commercialization arm of Singapore's Agency for Science, Technology, and Research — to develop molecular diagnostic assays, including one for breast cancer.

Under the new five-year alliance, the assays will be designed to run on Biocartis' real-time PCR-based Idylla platform, and each partner will co-invest in the development of jointly selected tests. Biocartis will be responsible for commercializing the tests under its own label, while ETPL will act as a development partner through Singapore's Diagnostics Development Hub. Financial details of the deal were not disclosed.

The arrangement is an extension of a mid-2015 agreement between Biocartis and ETPL under which the partners evaluated various biomarkers with the goal of developing diagnostics for the Idylla platform.

Based on that initial work, Biocartis and ETPL have selected a solid biopsy breast cancer assay designed to guide drug selection for HER-2-targeted therapies, hormone receptor therapies, and certain novel targets as the first product they will develop under the new alliance.

"We are thrilled to work with ETPL for the development of our second breast cancer assay, this time aimed at supporting decisions for a rapidly growing number of targeted and hormone receptor therapies for breast cancer patients," Biocartis CSO Geert Maertens said in a statement.

Last month, Biocartis formed a collaboration with LifeArc — formerly MRC Technology — to develop tests for the Idylla platform including a liquid biopsy assay for monitoring metastatic breast cancer patients for resistance to hormone therapy.