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OncoCyte, The Wistar Institute Enter Global Licensing Agreement

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OncoCyte Corporation a developer of novel, non-invasive blood based tests for the early detection of cancer, and The Wistar Institute, an international biomedical research leader in cancer, immunology and infectious diseases, have entered into a definitive global licensing agreement for a simple, non-invasive, blood test to aid physicians in the early detection of lung cancer. The agreement provides OncoCyte the exclusive rights to commercialize this lung cancer diagnostic test.

Since 2013, OncoCyte and Wistar have been collaborating on product development of the lung cancer diagnostic test. In 2015, positive interim clinical results demonstrating the high level of observed sensitivity and specificity in the assayed samples of a prototype blood test for lung cancer were presented at the American Thoracic Society International Conference. Now, both parties are finalizing this assay, which is intended to serve as a confirmatory test for patients who are at risk for lung cancer (based on a patient’s positive or suspicious results identified by low dose computed tomography (LDCT) screening). If successful scientific and technical results are achieved, OncoCyte will proceed to the test’s final validation with the goal of completing work in 2016 to enable its commercial launch.

“This global licensing agreement is an important milestone as we move toward commercializing our blood test for lung cancer,” said William Annett, OncoCyte’s chief executive officer. “OncoCyte now has exclusive access to patented and unpatented technology developed at Wistar, including its scientific and technical lung cancer diagnostic expertise. This will be critical as we conclude our clinical studies, conduct the test’s validation study, and, if that work is successful, commercialize the new cancer diagnostic test. Our lung cancer test addresses a large unmet need for the estimated 10 million high risk patients in the U.S. who require annual testing. Today’s standard of care, LDCT screening, has a high false positive rate, so our lung cancer test is intended to improve patient outcomes and reduce costs to the healthcare system through the early and accurate detection of cancer.”

“The signing of this licensing agreement is an additional milestone in what has been a particularly successful partnership between Wistar and OncoCyte and another step forward in realizing our common goal to develop new applications that will benefit populations that are at risk for developing lung cancer,” said Louise Showe, Ph.D, professor in the Molecular and Cellular Oncogenesis Program, associate director of the Center for System’s and Computational Biology, and scientific director of the Bioinformatics Facility and the Genomics Facility at The Wistar Institute.