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Thermo Fisher, NX Prenatal Partner on Pregnancy Outcome Assay Development

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) — Thermo Fisher Scientific and NX Prenatal said today that they have partnered on the development of mass spectrometry-based proteomics assays for adverse pregnancy outcomes.

Under the terms of the deal, the companies will combine NX's NeXosome technology — which uses exosomes and other microparticles in the maternal bloodstream to non-invasively monitor changing maternal and fetal cells and tissues — with Thermo Fisher's liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry instrumentation. The resulting assays will be designed to monitor fetal health in utero and assess the risk of adverse outcomes such as preterm birth and preeclampsia.

Additional terms were not disclosed.

"The codevelopment of a commercially available clinical mass spectrometry-based proteomics assay has the potential to provide a diagnostic solution to both clinical scientists and medical professionals offering more confidence in the evaluation of novel biomarkers that can support a safe delivery and healthy future for mother and baby," Brad Hart, senior director of chromatography and mass spectrometry clinical research at Thermo Fisher, said in a statement.

In October, Louisville, Kentucky-based NX partnered with the Indiana University School of Medicine to clinically validate its early pregnancy biomarker panels for spontaneous preterm birth and further develop its panels for preeclampsia.

Earlier this year, Waltham, Massachusetts-based Thermo Fisher acquired a 9 percent stake in British prenatal diagnostics firm Yourgene.