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Preterm birth risk diagnostic test to be given boost by partnership between Agilent Technologies and Sera PrognosticsPreterm birth risk diagnostic test to be given boost by partnership between Agilent Technologies and Sera Prognostics


Agilent has entered a partnership with the women’s health company to develop proteomic assays for fetal and maternal health.

The companies Agilent Technologies Inc. (Santa Clara, CA, USA) and Sera Prognostics Inc. (Salt Lake City, UT, USA) have joined forces to develop new diagnostic assays for maternal and fetal health. Agilent has partnered Sera Prognostics, a women’s health company, to apply advanced proteomics techniques to diagnostic challenges in women’s health.

Sera is developing a diagnostic test which will be an early predictor of the risk of preterm birth. The biotechnology company is a developer of diagnostic tests for the prediction of preterm birth and other complications that may arise in pregnancy, with the aim of allowing personalized care to be given and improving the health of both mother and infant.

Sera has purchased several Agilent 1290 Infinity ultra high-performance LC systems, 6490 iFunnel triple quadrupole MS systems and 1260 Infinity LC systems with ultraviolet detectors for this partnership and is adapting Agilent’s automated sample-preparation technologies for production. Together, Sera Prognostics and Agilent will develop high-throughput methods for sample preparation and MS analysis. Sera expect to utilize Agilent’s automated sample preparation methods, using the AssayMAP Bravo and RapidFire fast LC with ultra-sensitive ion funnel triple quadrupole MS. This will facilitate high-throughput sample analysis.

“By providing pivotal information to physicians, Sera’s preterm birth predictor is designed to address an unmet medical need for a reliable, early risk assessment that has the potential to help significantly improve the health of mothers and newborns, while materially reducing the costs of care,” said Gregory Critchfield, chairman and chief executive officer of Sera Prognostics. “Our partnership with Agilent provides Sera with access to advanced and innovative technologies designed to deliver on the promise of personalized medicine.”

Sera is currently working on the world’s largest study of clinical biomarkers involved in preterm birth risk, to validate its ProNid preterm birth predictor test. In November 2011, the company completed a Series A financing round of US$19.3 million to develop the test.

“Agilent and Sera Prognostics share the vision of applying the power of advanced proteomic technologies to address meaningful medical challenges,” said Yvonne Linney, Vice President and general manager of Agilent’s Life Science Solutions Division. “Agilent instrumentation is at the forefront of driving high-throughput workflows for sample preparation and mass-spec analysis that is critical in the field of proteomics.”

Source: Agilent Technologies and Sera Prognostics enter strategic partnership to develop protemic assays.



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