- GeneNews licenses exclusive marketing rights for colorectal cancer blood test to Enzo for key states of New York and New Jersey -
TORONTO, Nov. 18 /CNW/ - GeneNews Limited (TSX: GEN), an emerging molecular diagnostics and personalized health management company today announced that it has entered into a marketing partnership agreement with Enzo Clinical Labs (New York, NYSE: ENZ) for the exclusive rights to market ColonSentry, the world's first blood test for colorectal cancer, in New York and New Jersey. Enzo will validate and seek approval of the ColonSentry test pursuant to New York, New Jersey and CLIA requirements in addition to marketing and securing third party reimbursement for the test. Commercial terms were not disclosed. Enzo is projecting the U.S. launch of ColonSentry in the second half of 2010.
"Enzo is focused on bringing leading edge, world-class molecular tests to our customers and offering first-in-class tests such as ColonSentry is a central component of this strategy," said Dr. Kevin Krenitsky, President of Enzo Clinical Labs. "We are pleased to be working with GeneNews as their exclusive marketing partner in our key territories for this groundbreaking test which offers patients a novel, non-invasive option for determining an individual's current risk for colorectal cancer."
"The greatest barrier to reducing mortality arising from colorectal cancer is patient compliance with screening," said Dr. Bernard Levin, an internationally recognized expert in colorectal cancer screening and Chair of the GeneNews Colorectal Cancer Clinical Advisory Board. "As a blood-based test, ColonSentry can encourage individuals to undergo screening which could lead to earlier detection, thereby potentially reducing the suffering and death that can result from this highly treatable disease."
"GeneNews is pleased to be working with Enzo, an undisputed leader in the molecular diagnostic lab space and an excellent match for our lead product," said Dr. Heiner Dreismann, Lead Director and Interim CEO of GeneNews. "Enzo is our first US regional marketing partner and will provide an important segment of the eligible U.S. population with access to our ColonSentry test," added Gailina Liew, COO of GeneNews. "This marketing partnership is a key milestone achievement for GeneNews and follows the recent achievement of additional milestones including the publication of clinical validation data for ColonSentry and the issuance of a core U.S. patent for our Sentinel Principle platform technology. In line with our ColonSentry commercialization strategy, we are actively engaged in discussions with potential marketing partners in other U.S. regions, Europe and Asia to provide global access to ColonSentry."
About Colorectal Cancer and Screening
In the U.S., colorectal cancer is the third leading cause of cancer deaths for men and women. Colorectal cancer has a very poor prognosis if it is diagnosed after the cancer has spread distantly outside the colon; however, if it is detected early it is usually curable. Additionally, detecting and removing pre-cancerous polyps may help prevent cancer from developing. Current screening tests are invasive, expensive, inconvenient or not readily available. As a result, the vast majority of individuals eligible for screening are not adequately screened. It is estimated that about 80 million people in the U.S. aged 50 or older would benefit from regular screening and that only approximately 45% of this group comply with current screening guidelines. Outside the U.S., screening compliance rates are much lower.
Enzo Biochem, Inc., is a growth-oriented integrated life sciences and biotechnology company focused on harnessing biological process to develop research tools, diagnostics and therapeutics, and serves as a provider of both routine and esoteric test services to the medical community. Since its founding in 1976, the Company's strategic focus has been on the development of enabling technologies in the life sciences field. Enzo Life Sciences develops, produces and markets proprietary labelling and detection products for gene expression analysis, nucleic acid detection, protein biochemistry, and cellular analysis, among others. Its catalog of over 40,000 products serve the molecular biology, cellular biochemistry, drug discovery and pathology research markets worldwide. Enzo Clinical Labs division provides laboratory services for a growing roster of physicians in the New York Metropolitan area, as well as New Jersey and parts of Pennsylvania. Its tests include, in addition to routine tests, capabilities for detecting molecular infectious disease, molecular oncology, autoimmune disorders and genetics. Enzo Clinical Labs also provides clinical diagnostic services that allow Enzo to capitalize on its extensive advanced molecular and cytogenetic capabilities and the broader trends in predictive and personalized diagnostics. Enzo Therapeutics is a biopharmaceutical venture that has developed multiple novel approaches in the areas of gastrointestinal, infectious, ophthalmic and metabolic diseases. It has focused its efforts on developing treatment regimens for diseases and conditions for which current treatment options are ineffective, costly, and/or cause unwanted side effects. In the course of the company's research and development activities, Enzo has developed a substantial portfolio of intellectual property assets, with over 240 issued patents worldwide and more than 200 pending patent applications.
GeneNews is an emerging molecular diagnostics company focused on the application of functional genomics to enable early diagnosis and personalized health management based on disease-specific biomarkers. The Company has been granted a U.S. patent for its core platform technology, the Sentinel Principle(R), which has the power to detect and stage virtually any disease or medical condition from a simple blood sample. GeneNews is currently applying the Sentinel Principle(R) in major areas with unmet clinical needs such as cancer, arthritis, cardiovascular disease and neurological disorders. GeneNews launched its first commercial product, ColonSentry(TM), a blood-based test to assess an individual's risk for colorectal cancer, in Canada in 2008. For more information on GeneNews and ColonSentry(TM), visit www.genenews.com or www.colonsentry.com.
This press release contains forward-looking statements, which reflect the Company's current expectations regarding future events. The forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties. Actual events could differ materially from those projected herein. Investors should consult the Company's ongoing quarterly filings and annual reports for additional information on risks and uncertainties relating to these forward-looking statements. The reader is cautioned not to rely on these forward-looking statements. The Company disclaims any obligation to update these forward-looking statements.
SOURCE GeneNews Limited
For further information: For further information: Gailina Liew, Chief Operating Officer, (905) 739-2036, firstname.lastname@example.org; Casey Gurfinkel, (416) 815-0700 x 283, email@example.com