Arquer Diagnostics Ltd (Arquer) has announced that it has signed a collaboration agreement with the University of Sunderland. The partnership aims to investigate non-invasive specimen preparation techniques, which will facilitate the use of Arquer’s MCM5-ELISA test in a wider range of cancers. Arquer’s MCM5-ELISA is a simple, non-invasive test, which has been developed to accurately diagnose both bladder and prostate cancer.
The test works by detecting the presence of minichromosome maintenance complex component 5 (MCM5) protein, a marker for the presence of dividing cancer cells, in urine. MCM proteins are directly involved in cell replication, and are shed into urine by both prostate and bladder tumours. Through the partnership with the University of Sunderland, Faculty of Applied Sciences, Arquer aims to identify the optimal conditions for processing various samples collected using different collection methods to assist in the preparation of a clinical feasibility study in a wider range of cancers.
As part of the collaboration, the University will be carrying out in vitro work, using cell lines, to optimise non-invasive sample collection methods which may be compatible with the MCM5-ELISA. Arquer will supply the MCM5-ELISA tests to enable the University to test the effectiveness of the sampling methods. The study is expected to conclude in early 2017.
Commenting on the partnership, Mr Tristan Sillars, Director of Arquer Diagnostics, said: "As we prepare for EU regulatory submission and market launch of our MCM5-ELISA diagnostic test, we are delighted to be working with the University of Sunderland. The partnership has the potential to extend the application of MCM5-ELISA for use in a wider range of cancers, to benefit both patients and clinicians.”
Arquer recently announced ethical approval for the largest privately funded bladder cancer study in the UK and achieved a key commercial milestone with the announcement of the Companies first manufacturing and supply agreement in February this year.