A Eurostars grant for up to €1 million has been awarded to a consortium including BioLizard, Ghent, Belgium; Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (KU Leuven); Maastricht University; and Novigenix, Epalinges, Switzerland. The grant will support the development of a blood-based multiomics colorectal cancer (CRC) test.
The aim of the consortium is to develop a blood test based on transcriptomic and epigenetic biomarkers for early detection and relapse monitoring in CRC patients. The biomarker development strategy will leverage transcriptome profiling of whole blood and candidate tumor DNA methylation markers in cell free-DNA. Moreover, the consortium will develop an automated and structured data analysis process, including the most advanced machine learning methods, and validate multiomics signatures.
The consortium balances industrial and academic partners. Novigenix will leverage its core competencies in immunotranscriptomics technology; BioLizard will focus on biological data integration, bioinformatics analysis, pipeline implementation, and artificial intelligence solutions. The group at Maastricht University, led by Manon van Engeland, MD, brings expertise on CRC DNA methylation; the KU Leuven molecular digestive oncology group led by Sabine Tejpar, MD, PhD, adds a clinical network for prospective collection of biological specimens and data interpretation.
“This Eurostars project combines excellent, world-leading science and technologies in a consortium dedicated to making significant advances in how colorectal cancer is detected and its treatment monitored,” says Jan Groen, PhD, chief executive officer of Novigenix. “We believe the outcome of this project, a potential omics-based test, will be important for the diagnosis and disease management of CRC patients.”
For more information, visit Novigenix.