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Pharus Diagnostics Acquires Rights to Blood Cancer Biomarkers From City of Hope

NEW YORK — Taiwanese early cancer detection firm Pharus Diagnostics said on Thursday that it has acquired an exclusive worldwide license from the City of Hope to a series of blood-based molecular biomarkers that could potentially be used in the early diagnosis of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC).

According to PharusDx, the biomarkers are microRNAs discovered in the lab of City of Hope researcher Ajay Goel — a member of PharusDx's advisory board — who has long been investigating the potential of small, noncoding RNAs as biomarkers in oncology.

PharusDx said that it aims to use the biomarkers to develop a liquid biopsy test, called OncoSweep, for PDAC screening, particularly in at-risk, asymptomatic individuals such as diabetics and people with a history of pancreatitis. The firm is also developing a test dubbed OncoSweep Multi-Cancer Early Detection.