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Epigenomics and Predictive Biosciences Extend Licensing Deal for Prostate Cancer Test

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Epigenomics AG, the cancer diagnostics company, and Predictive Biosciences, a commercial stage, fully-integrated developer of novel molecular diagnostic cancer assays and a provider of anatomic pathology laboratory products and services, today announced that they have extended their licensing agreement for the prostate cancer biomarker GSTP1, originally signed in April 2009. Under the terms of the original agreement, Predictive Biosciences had obtained rights to develop a prostate cancer test incorporating this well known DNA methylation biomarker and an option to license GSTP1 for commercialization of this test as a laboratory service in the United States. Based on strong continued progress in developing the test, Predictive Biosciences has now executed this option, triggering an undisclosed one-time license fee to Epigenomics. Epigenomics will also be entitled to royalties on future sales generated with Predictive Biosciences’ prostate cancer test, which is still in development.

“Prostate cancer diagnosis suffers from poor specificity of PSA screening,” said Geert Nygaard, CEO of Epigenomics. “We are therefore delighted that Predictive Biosciences will be using our biomarker to develop a test to improve the diagnostic follow-up of patients with high PSA.”

“We have been very impressed with the quality of methylated GSTP1 as a biomarker for prostate cancer,” said Peter Klemm, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of Predictive Biosciences. “This biomarker will provide a valuable contribution to the portfolio of tests we are commercializing in the field of urologic oncology.”

Prostate cancer is one of the most prevalent forms of cancer and the leading cause of cancer death in men in the U.S., with more than 230,000 cases diagnosed annually and more than 1 million prostate biopsies performed each year. The methylation of the GSTP1 gene is well established as a biomarker of prostate cancer and a test that detects methylated GSTP1 DNA in urine or tissue, in combination with conventional histopathology, may enable a more accurate diagnosis.

Source: Epigenomics