TcLand Expression SA announced that the company and its collaborative partners have been awarded €450,000 in research funding by the French National Research Agency (ANR) for a companion diagnostic program in rheumatoid arthritis.

TcLand Expression is collaborating with the prestigious research groups led by Professor Pierre Miossec  and Professor Olivier Vittecoq & Dr Thierry Lequerré (Inserm 905 Unit "Physiopathology & biotherapy, inflammatory and immune mediated diseases", Rouen University Hospital, Rouen) to develop a highly innovative, blood-based diagnostic test to predict the response to biological agents in rheumatoid arthritis – a severe chronic inflammatory disease affecting approximately 1% of the population worldwide.

Efficient treatment for RA is often hampered by the heterogeneity of the treatment response, with a great number of patients remaining refractory to treatment or demonstrating only partial improvement. The 2-year PRATT project "Predicting Responses to Anti-TNF alpha Therapy" will use state-of-theart technology to develop a diagnostic test based on the measurement of gene expression in an easy-toobtain, minimally invasive blood sample. The test will help to drive patient-centered therapy by identifying “responder” patients prior to treatment initiation; this will promote more effective treatments and enable “non-responder” patients to be fast-tracked to suitable alternative therapies.

“This ANR funding will help us to progress our commitment to providing relevant, personalized medicine tools to the rheumatology community and to consolidate our partnership with the key opinion leaders Professors Miossec and Vittecoq”, said Alain Huriez, CEO at TcLand Expression.

Source: TcLand Expression