QIAGEN N.V. has announced two agreements adding promising new biomarkers involving glioblastoma, lymphoma and other cancers to QIAGEN’s expanding portfolio of potential companion diagnostics that is being developed to help doctors use a patient’s genomic information to guide treatment decisions.
In the glioblastoma project, QIAGEN has entered into an exclusive worldwide licensing option on FGFR-TACC fusion genes with Columbia University in New York.
QIAGEN intends to develop this biomarker into a diagnostic test for routine use in diagnostic workups, which may enable doctors to identify glioblastoma patients who could benefit from targeted treatments now under development.
Glioblastoma is the most common and aggressive form of primary brain tumor, a serious unmet medical need because the disease is generally fatal despite aggressive therapy.
Fusions between members of the FGFR and TACC gene families also have been identified recently as present in several other malignancies, including bladder cancers.
QIAGEN has also entered into an exclusive license option with the BC Cancer Agency, based in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, for the EZH2 Y641 mutation biomarker that could serve as a companion diagnostic test for routine selection of patients who could benefit from EZH2 targeted therapies that are currently under development by major pharmaceutical companies.
"The expansion of our portfolio of biomarkers for the development of innovative companion diagnostics is a key focus of QIAGEN. Through Personalized Healthcare, QIAGEN is helping doctors achieve better outcomes for patients and better utilize healthcare resources by targeting the right drugs to the right patients," said Peer M. Schatz, Chief Executive Officer of QIAGEN N.V. "QIAGEN’s expertise and solutions spanning the continuum from research to commercialization is driving significant value in Personalized Healthcare - a rapidly growing franchise with $100 million of annual sales. Deep relationships with leading academic centers provide a rich source of biomarkers, as in these latest two agreements. In partnership with top pharmaceutical companies, we are translating genomic discoveries into standardized companion diagnostics to guide the use of targeted drugs. Personalized Healthcare is driving the growth of QIAGEN as molecular information plays an increasingly important role in improving outcomes for patients."
Excellence in Personalized Healthcare
QIAGEN is a leading partner globally in developing and validating companion diagnostics to guide the selection of medicines in treating cancer and other diseases.
In July 2012, QIAGEN received FDA approval for the therascreen® KRAS RGQ PCR Kit as a companion diagnostic in patients with metastatic colorectal cancer.
The U.S. rollout of therascreen KRAS builds on a strong global leadership position including successes in Japan, where regulators approved the therascreen KRAS and EGFR kits in 2011, and in Europe, where QIAGEN offers 10 CE-marked assays for personalized healthcare applications.
QIAGEN has more than 15 projects under way to co-develop and market companion diagnostics with leading Pharma and biotech companies.