Cytox debuts genetic biomarker research tool to test for Alzheimer’s risk

The U.K.’s Cytox has launched the research use of its variaTECT genetic biomarker test for assessing the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

The test, known as  the variaTECT SNP (single nucleotide polymorphism) array, provides a simple blood-based research test. It features a comprehensive panel of Alzheimer’s informative SNPs to assist research and new drug discovery studies, and can help users in the pharma industry reduce the screening failure rate in identifying amyloid positive subjects for recruitment into clinical trials, the company said.

The test has the potential to reduce costs and time, and was developed with Affymetrix, which is part of Thermo Fisher Scientific ($TMO).

“For Alzheimer therapy to work effectively, we need to start to treat the disease very early,” John Hardy, chair of Molecular Biology of Neurological Disease, UCL Institute of Neurology, London, said in a statement. “Genetic analysis is the most effective way of deciding who should be assessed for early disease. For this, we need to achieve an AUC of close to 80 percent… and this is just where the current array performs.”

The array will be marketed as the Axiom Dementia Research Array and includes the variaTECT SNP panel designed on an Affymetrix Axiom Genotyping Array and processed on an Affymetrix GeneTitan Multi-Channel Instrument.

The company's goal has been to develop a blood-based biomarker whose presence (assessed via a diagnostic assay) could be used to assess and predict a patient's risk for Alzheimer's. In theory, the advance would enable early Alzheimer's detection and subsequent treatment before the disease causes too much damage.

- check out the release

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