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King’s College London reaches data agreement with PrecisionLife

The link-up will enable the company to identify new motor neurone disease biomarkers.

PrecisionLife – a tech bio company – has announced that it has agreed to a data access and licensing partnership with King’s College London.

The terms of the agreement will enable PrecisionLife to generate and commercialise novel insights into motor neurone disease (MND) and Lou Gehrig’s Disease.

The link-up will also enable the Oxford-based company to identify new MND biomarkers, galvanise investment, and enable the development of new treatments and diagnostic tools.

Meanwhile, King’s College London has allowed access to vital patient data at the request of the MND Association. The joint-working project will also unfold in collaboration with professor Ammar Al-Chalabi – professor of neurology and complex disease genetics at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience at King’s College London.

PrecisionLife has previously used its platform to identify 33 new genes associated with increased risk for MND, as well as patient stratification biomarkers distinguishing patient subgroups that may respond to targeted treatment approaches.

The company has also completed a retrospective analysis of phase 3 clinical trial data in CNS disorders to establish biomarkers of drug response. The aim of this has been to support drug developers and regulators with evidence of therapeutic benefits among specific patient groups within a trial population.

MND remains a complex condition with variations in symptoms, rate of progression, risk factors and the biological drivers of the disease. The platform has the ability to stratify patients, categorising MND patient populations into subgroups and offering new hope for the development of precision medicine therapies.

Al-Chalabi explained: “Research is at its most effective when there is active collaboration in the pursuit of a common goal. This agreement speaks to the momentum that MND research is experiencing, and I am excited about its potential to bring new developments in this field.”

Dr Steve Gardner, chief executive officer at PrecisionLife, concluded: “PrecisionLife is grateful for the support and collaboration of professor Al-Chalabi and the MND Association in enabling us to access the MND Collections data, and is grateful to all participants, donors and their families and carers, without whom this invaluable research resource would not exist.”

He added: “We’re committed to finding better, more personalised ways of diagnosing, and treating patients and the new data access agreement will help accelerate our progress.”