Personalized medicine grows in China with Chinese/Canadian collaboration

Long thought of as a low-cost location for manufacturing, China is quickly emerging as a growing market and a center for R&D in its own right, and companies from the West are recognizing this, creating joint ventures and collaborations. The latest of these in the biomarker field is Canadian company GeneNews, which has signed a memorandum of understanding with Shanghai Biochip to create a joint R&D hub for personalized medicine.

GeneNews develops blood-based biomarker tests for the diagnosis of disease and use in personalized medicine, and the Chinese company Shanghai Biochip will bring microarray and gene expression profiling technologies to the mix. The new hub, which will be known as the Sentinel Centre for Personalized Medicine, will co-develop and commercialize products based on GeneNews' proprietary platform technology, which it calls the Sentinel Principle. Shanghai Biochip also gains the non-exclusive rights to market and sell GeneNews' ColonSentry test in China.

"We are focused on bringing leading edge technologies to the people of China to improve healthcare outcomes," stated Dr. Yuchen Chen, director, business development of SBC. "We are looking forward to working with GeneNews to establish the world's first Sentinel Centre for Personalized Medicine to advance the development and commercialization of innovative, non-invasive tests targeted at early disease detection in China."

Shanghai Biochip is no newcomer to international collaboration--the company has already signed agreements with GlaxoSmithKline ($GSK), Merck ($MRK), Affymetrix ($AFFX) and Agilent Tech. As China becomes more of a high-tech hub for R&D, we can expect to see more biomarker agreements taking shape.

- read the press release

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