Children’s Hospital Colorado and SomaLogic announce collaboration to develop novel diagnostic tests

Children’s Hospital Colorado and SomaLogic Announce Collaboration to Develop Novel Diagnostic Tests

10/8/2014

Children’s Hospital Colorado and SomaLogic, Inc. announced today that they have entered into a collaborative agreement to discover protein biomarkers and use those biomarkers to develop laboratory tests to improve the diagnosis and management of childhood diseases. The discovery and development work will be done using SomaLogic’s novel proteomics SOMAscan™ assay, which can measure more than a thousand proteins in a small amount of blood or other biological samples. This innovative collaboration is being entered into as a result of successful initial exploratory research done by the two organizations.

The research team will be led by Robin Deterding, M.D., Director of the Breathing Institute at Children’s Colorado, Professor of Pulmonary Medicine in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Colorado School of Medicine, and Chair of the North American Children’s Interstitial and Diffuse Lung Disease Research Network (CHILDRN). Deterding is an international expert in the care of children with rare diffuse lung disease.

“We have a unique ‘game changing’ opportunity to rapidly discover and apply blood-based protein biomarkers for the early diagnosis of rare and common pediatric lung diseases, but also for the diagnosis, prognosis and monitoring of many other childhood diseases. ” said Dr. Deterding. “My colleagues and I are excited to continue our initial exploratory work with SomaLogic and their unprecedented protein measuring technology to find breakthrough new tools to dramatically improve the clinical care of children.”

Under the agreement, researchers at Children’s Colorado and SomaLogic will work together to widely analyze the proteins from blood samples obtained from children suffering from disease. They will then select those proteins, or biomarkers, whose change in concentration is correlated with disease (and its severity) to serve as a basis for developing in-house diagnostic tests for future clinical use. These tests will rely on SomaLogic’s technology, which can be scaled to measure from thousands of proteins for discovery of biomarkers to only a few selected proteins for diagnostic purposes.

“This collaboration with Children’s Hospital and CU School of Medicine faculty is the ideal model for how we would like to see our technology used by academic research centers to make a difference in the lives of patients,” said Byron Hewett, Chief Executive Officer of SomaLogic. “Their clinical insight and expertise matched to our proteomics expertise should lead to both a deeper understanding of the biology of these devastating diseases, and to new ways to manage them more precisely and effectively.”

“We are excited about the possibilities this partnership will develop for earlier identification and improved management of childhood diseases. SomaLogic’s innovative technology coupled with our clinical expertise will allow us to diagnose and ultimately improve treatment for children everywhere”, said Jim Shmerling, CEO of Children’s Hospital Colorado.

Financial details of the collaborative agreement were not disclosed.