HTG Molecular Diagnostics, Inc. and Firalis S.A. have announced an agreement to develop a next generation sequencing (NGS)-based theranostic tool to identify likely non-responders from responders to anti-TNFα therapy for rheumatoid arthritis (RA). RA is a chronic inflammatory disease that affects millions of people in the United States and Western Europe.
TNFα-inhibiting therapies, the blockbusters representing a multibillion dollar market, have shown a major breakthrough in the treatment of RA. However, these drugs are found to lack efficacy in an estimated 30 to 40 percent of patients (non-responders). The RABIOPRED* tool aims to identify the non-responders to improve patient management.
Under the agreement, HTG will supply instrumentation and reagents to support Firalis’ development, validation, and clinical deployment of RABIOPRED, a biomarker assay to predict treatment response in RA, using the NGS-based HTG EdgeSeq system.
“Firalis was the first adopter of the HTG Edge and HTG EdgeSeq systems in Europe, and we are pleased to expand our relationship through this personalized medicine initiative,” said TJ Johnson, President and CEO of HTG. “We are also happy to have Firalis as a certified service provider.”
“Millions of RA patients are treated with TNFα-inhibiting agents but the clinicians currently are unable to predict patient response to these expensive biologicals,” said Hueseyin Firat, President & CEO of Firalis.
“We believe the ability to predict response to anti-TNFα treatment would greatly improve clinical decision-making, improve health outcomes for RA patients, and contribute to cost reduction and sustainability of the health care system.”