CombiMatrix Corp, Irvine, Calif, will begin accepting samples for preimplantation genetic screening (PGS) by next-generation sequencing (NGS) in mid-June.

PGS is a test performed on embryos of couples undergoing an in vitro fertilization (IVF) procedure, and is designed to examine embryos for chromosomal abnormalities prior to implantation. This procedure reduces the risk for miscarriage and abnormal pregnancies, and increases the success rate of the implantation and of a normal pregnancy. The NGS technology now being adopted by CombiMatrix and made available for all PGS testing was developed to offer accuracy and sensitivity in the detection of both whole-chromosome and segmental aneuploidies.

Comprehensive coverage of the entire genome achieves increased clarity and higher resolution of both chromosomal and subchromosomal alterations. The streamlined workflow also reduces turnaround time for reported test results.

Mark McDonough, CombiMatrix.

Mark McDonough, CombiMatrix.

“PGS testing provides valuable information for family planning decisionmaking and supports healthy pregnancies,” says Mark McDonough, president and chief executive of CombiMatrix. “PGS testing by NGS adds another accretive assay to our IVF offering and complements our current reproductive health diagnostics portfolio. This will allow us to build on momentum in our miscarriage analysis and prenatal diagnostics testing businesses with our established customers. As with all of CombiMatrix’s tests, we will provide our signature high-touch service model for this test that includes the genetic counseling support that is critical for complicated cases.

“We estimate the US market for PGS at approximately $75 million annually, and growing as more physicians and families recognize the benefits of this information,” McDonough adds. “This new offering is expected to drive our PGS testing volume through new customer adoption and improve gross margins as procedure volumes increase. As the vast majority of PGS testing is self-paid, this testing will also support our high cash reimbursement rate, which is an important aspect of our business model. We look forward to leveraging our NGS capabilities to bring other value-added tests to market in the coming months and years.”

For more information, visit CombiMatrix.