Affymetrix Inc, Santa Clara, Calif, and XRGenomics Ltd, Warwick, UK, have announced plans to collaborate on research and development of a new generation of diagnostic tests for age-related diseases.
XRGenomics is using Affymetrix technology to develop gene expression-based signatures for translational research and biomarker test development in areas such as dementia, Alzheimer’s, and other age-related diseases.
“Our unique approach to building diagnostics for complex diseases that become prevalent with age requires a high-throughput global transcriptomics solution such as that offered by expression array plates processed on the Affymetrix GeneTitan system—a platform that is scalable, accurate, and cost-effective,” says Jamie Timmons, PhD, chief scientific officer at XRGenomics.
“To provide the next generation of clinically meaningful diagnostics for geriatric medicine, one must simultaneously assess multiple ‘RNA scores,’ or markers for several age-related chronic diseases, to get an accurate picture of the patient,” Timmons says. “This is why we are so excited to be working with Affymetrix to optimize our RNA signatures in thousands of patients with cognitive impairment, and using the Affymetrix GeneTitan platform, which is extremely well suited to meet the technical demands of large-scale clinical trials.”
“There is a clear need to address the enormous challenge of managing complex age-related diseases that face healthcare systems globally,” says Dan St. Louis, senior vice president of the expression business unit at Affymetrix. “We believe that the work of XRGenomics will materially improve the research, diagnosis, and treatment of age-related diseases in the near future.
“Our GeneChip U133 Plus 2.0 array used by XRGenomics—particularly in its high-throughput automated format—continues to serve as a proven platform for clinical and translational researchers who need to analyze the expression profile of large clinical cohorts with the accuracy, reproducibility, speed, and cost-effectiveness required to successfully develop complex RNA-based tests for clinical utility,” adds St. Louis.
XRGenomics hopes that its biological age signature becomes an important stratification tool for dementia research as early as 2017.