A Medical Device Daily

The Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen; Phoenix) and GE Healthcare (Waukesha, Wisconsin) have entered into an alliance to apply advanced cellular genomics technologies and strategies to improve and accelerate the discovery and development of new drugs and diagnostics.

The collaboration will support the goals of translating basic genomic research into early health solutions for some of the most urgent problems facing healthcare today, the companies said in their announcement.

TGen translates genomic discoveries into earlier diagnoses and treatments.

Spyro Mousses, PhD, director of pharmaceutical genomics and cancer drug development at TGen, said that GE's advanced imaging systems “allow us to observe cellular morphology more clearly and perform cytometry at an unprecedented rate. Most importantly, we can more accurately collect multi-parametric information about how cells are responding to specific genetic perturbations and to specific drug exposures.“

Tgen's high-throughput cellular analysis research program will be equipped with both the GE IN Cell Analyzer 3000 and 1000 to identify and characterize cancer-associated genes that can be used to help develop more targeted medicines.

TGen describes translational genomics research as applying advances from the Human Genome Project to the development of diagnostics, prognostics and therapies for cancer, neurological disorders, diabetes and other diseases.

GE Healthcare also reported becoming a contracted vendor for the ACC-NCDR Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (ICD) registry.

GE will develop software to allow institutions to send procedure data to the ACC-NCDR. The company also said it introduced new electronic forms that will expedite participation in the ACC-NCDR ICD registry, the forms being a new feature on the MacLab Hemodynamic Monitoring and CardioLab Electrophysiology Monitoring systems providing point-of-care data collection of ICD data for download to the ACC-NCDR ICD registry software.

The registry software will enable the electronic submission of information required by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS; Baltimore) for hospital compliance and reimbursement, a prerequisite included as part of the CMS 2005 decision to expand Medicare coverage of ICD procedures.

GE said it expects ACC-NCDR ICD registry software to be certified in 4Q06.

In other agreements:

eClinicalWorks (Westborough, Massachusetts), a provider of ambulatory clinical information systems, and the Massachusetts Medical Society (MMS; Waltham, Massachusetts) reported an agreement to help physicians implement electronic medical records (EMRs) in their practices.

MMS member physicians will be able to streamline front to back-office operations through eClinicalWorks' unified EMR and practice management solution, choosing between the application service provider (ASP) or the client/server model. Access to the eClinicalWorks' web-based Patient Portal also will be offered.

Kenneth Peelle, MD, president of MSS, said, “Through eClinicalWorks, our members can obtain an integrated EMR and practice management solution for any size practice.“

eClinicalWorks' EMR solution provides the ability to manage patient flow, access patient records in-house or remotely, communicate electronically with referring physicians, and send secure consult notes and clinical data. Users can easily access and review complete patient histories, including past visits, current medications, allergies, labs and charts. Integrated with the EMR is eClinicalWorks Practice Management system, designed to streamline the medical billing process.

InforMedix Holdings (Rockville, Maryland) reported that its Med-eMonitor System will be sold by SUNRx (Cherry Hill, New Jersey), a pharmacy benefits administration company.

The Med-eMonitor System includes a device that goes home with the patient, alerting them when it is time to take their medications and reminding them how to properly take their medications. It also provides important educational information about their medications, disease state and overall plan of care.

SUNRx has developed what it calls the nation's “first proprietary Prescription Benefit Administrative Advocate service designed to reduce spiraling prescription plan costs.“

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