Exosome-Eli Lilly deal: Yesterday, Exosome Diagnostics announced it has entered into a collaboration agreement with Eli Lilly & Co. (NYSE:LLY). Using Exosome Diagnostics’ proprietary EXO50 nucleic acid extraction kit, they expect to move forward in biomarker discovery and validation. Financial terms were not disclosed.
Eli Lilly is a company dedicated to the discovery, development, manufacturing and sales of pharmaceutical products. It directs its research efforts essentially towards the search of products that will enable the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of human diseases. The firm’s pharmaceutical product segment embodies several divisions: neuroscience, endocrinology products, oncology, and cardiovascular diseases. With this agreement, Eli Lilly will gain early access to Exosome Diagnostics’ technology in order to help identify key mutations in genes and expression levels in blood that could have a correlation with drug response and disease recurrence.
“Exosome Diagnostics technology may provide a unique opportunity to gain insight into the biology of complex conditions such as cancer and immune disorders”, stated Andrew Schade, senior medical director, diagnostic and experimental pathology at Eli Lilly. He further said that “Exosome technology enables biofluid molecular sampling and the ability to monitor disease progression in real time. As Lilly explores new ways to pursue patient tailoring, we’ll continue to work with partners to expand our capabilities.”
Exosome’s Chief Executive Officer, James McCullough, said that “accessing high quality messenger and microRNA directly from frozen patient fluid samples offers a rapid, cost-effective route to identify and validate biomarkers, which may be correlated with drug response and disease recurrence”. His firm believes that “Lilly has accumulated an extensive and well annotated clinical blood sample biobank that provides a unique opportunity to track target biomarkers through the clinical trial process and help overcome the limitations of stored biopsy tissue.”
Exosome Diagnostics is developing biofluid-based molecular diagnostic tests. Exosomes and other microvesicles are shed into all biofluids –blood, urine, and cerebrospinal fluid- to form a highly enriched source of disease-specific nucleic acids, as stated on the company’s website. Analysis can be made on those fresh or frozen fluid samples that enable a broad, flexible and convenient analysis of clinical trial samples, requiring no special preservation methods.
Over the past years, Eli Lilly has engaged in an active search of acquisitions and in-licensing deals that will boost its portfolio and pipeline. It also has collaboration agreements with several other companies, such as Exome Diagnostics. These agreements allow the firm to keep expanding into high growth areas as well as they represent significant commercial potential and diminish competition. Check back for more updates on the Exosome-Eli Lilly deal.
Disclosure: Pamela Gaviño holds no position in any stocks mentioned