Pathway Diagnostics Corp, Malibu, Calif, has secured a patent is entitled "Analysis of HIV-1 Co-receptor Use in the Clinical Care of HIV-1-Infected Patients."

The company has licensed the patent—with rights to sub-license—from Health Research Inc, Rensselaer, NY, for use in the fields of laboratory diagnosis and monitoring. The patent discloses and claims diagnostic methods for monitoring CCR5 and CXCR4 co-receptor use in the treatment of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection.

The patent also claims monitoring CXCR4-specific strain suppression in HIV-positive individuals undergoing highly active anti-retroviral therapy. Pathway has obtained licensing rights from HRI for related patent applications, which together with the new patent form the technical foundation of its SensiTrop HIV tropism assay.
The ability of the HIV virus to infect different cell types using different cell surface receptors is referred to as HIV co-receptor tropism. One type of HIV that uses the CCR5 co-receptor has been shown to be blocked by CCR5 antagonist drugs such as Selzentry. A different type of HIV that uses the CXCR4 co-receptor is not blocked by CCR5 antagonists. Determining the tropism status of HIV-infected patients has been indicated by the FDA before initiating CCR5 antagonist therapy.

Pathway focuses on the development, validation, and commercialization of proprietary biomarker assays across multiple disease areas.