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Biocartis, Kite Sign Development Agreement for Immunotherapy Assays

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) –  Belgian molecular diagnostics firm Biocartis announced on Saturday that it has signed a master development and commercialization agreement with Gilead Sciences subsidiary Kite to develop molecular-based assays on its Idylla platform that support Kite's therapies.

The agreement with Santa Monica, California-based Kite is part of Biocartis ongoing plans to expand its presence in the oncology space with a series of immunotherapy and liquid biopsy assays on the Idylla platform, Biocartis said. Kite said that Idylla — an automated real-time PCR platform — could enable the frequent and rapid monitoring of cancer patients under cell therapies in a near-patient setting.

"We are very pleased to expand our initiatives in the field of immune-oncology through this assay development project with Kite," Biocartis CEO Herman Verrelst said in a statement. "The collective expertise gained through this partnership further supports one of our long-term strategic goals, aimed at building a menu of high quality and rapid molecular immunotherapy tests on Idylla."

Financial details of the agreement were not disclosed.

Biocartis previously partnered with Bristol-Myers Squibb in March to develop a companion diagnostic for several cancer immunotherapies, with an initial focus on colorectal cancer.