and the University of California at San Francisco will work together to develop new diagnostic tests, a collaboration that pairs an academic research organization with the world's largest diagnostic services provider.
The organizations will focus on developing tests that may include the use of imaging or other technologies in workups and take into account specific biomarkers or other genetic indicators of disease, as well as clinical and population research.
The multiyear initiative will initially focus on developing new diagnostics related to the treatment of autism, oncology, neurology and women's health.
Quest will pay an unspecified annual sum to support the infrastructure of the program. Also, the company will award about five to 10 individual grants of $50,000 to $500,000 to UCSF researchers each year.
The Madison, N.J.-based company will license, develop and commercialize novel biomarkers identified by UCSF or any new potential diagnostic applications. In turn, established diagnostic tests or emerging tests in Quest's pipeline can undergo translational research or clinical trials at UCSF. UCSF researchers will also have access to a Quest database of molecular testing data.
“This unique collaboration between UCSF and Quest brings together the finest researchers and clinicians in the country to accelerate the development of a 'product pipeline' of scientific discoveries as clinically valuable diagnostic solutions that enable precision medicine for improved outcomes,” said Dr. Jay Wohlgemuth, senior vice president of science and innovation for Quest
One research project aims to develop a test to aid autism diagnoses and help identify patients who may be appropriate candidates for research studies. Another project also underway seeks to identify the biomarkers in children with glioma brain tumors who benefit from drug therapy. A third project may research disorders of pregnancy, Wohlgemuth said. Follow Jaimy Lee on Twitter: @MHjlee