According to the pair, their partnership will foster the development of additional collaboration between Congenica and other universities and NHS hospital Trusts in the north of England.
The first proof-of-principle agreement under the partnership has already been formed between Congenica and Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. Under the terms of their agreement, the partners plan to create a reference laboratory that will be based at the Manchester Centre for Genomic Medicine that will handle genome screening of patients and their unaffected relatives to generate comprehensive genetic profiles and clinical reports. Initial efforts will focus on developmental disorders, but will eventually be expanded to include programs in other therapeutic indications, such as ophthalmological, cardiovascular, and neurological disease.
The partners will also work on developing and implementing next-generation sequencing data analysis pipelines, as well as on genome-wide interpretation and reporting tools for diagnostic testing. They'll use Congenica's genome analytics platform, which uses statistical and computational methods to analyze and process data from thousands of samples per year. The planned system will be rolled out to a variety of different applications and will be available through service and licensing business models.
"This is a great opportunity to bring together the wealth of clinical expertise and innovation at Manchester with our scalable genome analytics and clinical decision support tools," Tom Weaver, CEO of Congenica, said in a statement. "We strongly believe that partnering is the best way to facilitate rapid adoption of our technology and make a real impact on tackling genetic disease in the clinic."