TAmiRNA GmbH, Vienna, has debuted the OsteomiR molecular diagnostic kit for the detection of osteoporosis.

TAmiRNA has been working since 2013 to develop a minimally invasive molecular diagnostic test to estimate fracture risk among postmenopausal women as well as other subgroups at risk of osteoporosis. The results of clinical development, published in peer-reviewed journals during 2015 and 2016, have shown that serum concentrations of specific microRNAs are significantly associated with osteoporosis and the risk of fractures. Using multivariate diagnostic algorithms, a significant improvement in the classification of bone densitometry and other risk scores can be achieved.

“Due to the heterogeneity of osteoporosis, we are convinced that early and personalized diagnosis are essential for a timely and successful therapeutic prevention of bone fractures, which are associated with great pain, immobility, and unfortunately even mortality,” says Matthias Hackl, PhD, CEO of TAmiRNA and coinventor of the microRNA-based diagnostic procedure.

The OsteomiR kit standardizes laboratory and data analysis of osteoporosis-related microRNAs in patient serum samples. MicroRNAs are a class of non-coding RNA molecules that regulate gene expression and correct cell function. Abnormal microRNA expression can be a consequence or even cause the onset and progression of disease. Since microRNAs are constantly released from cells through specific mechanisms, their composition in blood changes during disease development.

“On the basis of several studies in more than 1,000 patients, we were able to show that certain microRNAs are strongly associated with the progression of osteoporosis and the risk of fractures,” says Johannes Grillari, PhD, professor at the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna, and cofounder and scientific advisor of TAmiRNA. “From these data, we were able to develop diagnostic algorithms based on microRNAs and clinical parameters to allow a more accurate patient classification.”

For now, the OsteomiR kit is available for research use only. In the near future its clinical utility will be investigated in multiple clinical research centers for musculoskeletal disease.

For more information, visit TAmiRNA.