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Agilent, Incyte sign deal for diagnostics on cancer treatments

Katie Tabeling
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Agilent Technologies and Incyte have signed an agreement to create companion diagnostics tests, bringing the two Delaware companies together.

Incyte and Agilent announced the partnership on Jan. 30, where Agilent will create patient-matching tests for new Incyte therapeutics in cancer and hematology. | PHOTO COURTESY OF AGILENT

WILMINGTON — Agilent Technologies and Incyte have signed an agreement to create companion diagnostics tests, bringing the two Delaware companies together in the future of cancer treatments.

Incyte and Agilent announced the partnership on Jan. 30, where Agilent will create patient-matching tests for new Incyte therapeutics in cancer and hematology. Companion diagnostics are used as prescreening to create a group of patients with the highest possible response rate to targeted therapies.

Terms of the deal, and specific cancers and blood disorders this plan would target, were undisclosed.

Agilent Vice President and General Manager of the Companion Diagnostics Division Paul Beresford said that the company will be able to add new disease biomarkers to its logs. That way, the company can expand its range of tests to gauge how a patient responds to a specific drug or treatment.

In exchange, Incyte will use the tests in clinical trials to get an understanding on which patients are responding to the treatments and those who experience side effects.

“Agilent’s expertise in the development of companion diagnostics is impressive, as is their regulatory and commercialization record,” Incyte Vice President of Translational Medicine Jeff Jackson said in a statement. “We are excited about the collaboration and look forward to working together to innovate in support of patients.”

Beresford added that the end goal was to bring the two companies — both of which have a global presence —together to seek approval on drug and diagnostics testing in the distant future.

“It’s a fairly rigorous testing process. Generally speaking, we’ll go through all these experiments so we can co-file with the Food and Drug Administration and work to meet global standards for reproducibility,” he said “We’ll have that coordinated with Incyte such that when it comes time to their drug getting approved, we’ll be locked in step with them as it applies to the launch of the diagnostic.”

In the press announcement, Agilent predicted the companion diagnostics market is predicted to expand to nearly $14 billion by 2030.

Agilent, a leader in precision medicine products, has already a storied history with companion diagnostics. In the 1990s, Dako, which Aglient later acquired, got approval for the HercepTest for breast cancer patients – the first companion diagnostic ever to receive FDA approval.

The company can also boast of past partnerships with Merck and others.

 

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