A Medical Device Daily

Nanogen (San Diego) and Pathway Diagnostics (Malibu, California) said that they have entered into a non-exclusive, worldwide license agreement under which Nanogen will develop diagnostic products that detect genetic variations associated with responses to antidepressant and antipsychotic therapeutics.

The companies have begun work on developing a molecular diagnostic product that could be used to select the most appropriate drug and dosage for patients treated for psychiatric diseases. Specific financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Although many therapeutic options are available for patients suffering from these conditions, for some patients the side effects of drug therapy can range from unpleasant to life-threatening, Nanogen said. Determining optimal drug regimens and dosing strategies are challenges that are currently addressed by trial-and-error prescribing practices.

Side effects may be caused by a variety of factors, including variations in genes that are targets of the drugs or are involved in drug response. In addition to the negative effect on an individual's health, the company said significant direct and indirect costs are associated with these adverse drug responses.

Howard Birndorf, Nanogen's chairman of the board and CEO, said, "Because our NanoChip platform can simultaneously analyze multiple genetic markers, we have the capability to develop a diagnostic panel to detect these newly licensed genetic variations, along with genes in the cytochrome P450 family that are related to drug metabolism, in order to allow the physician to prescribe the right drug at the right dosage."

Ikonisys (New Haven, Connecticut) reported the execution of two agreements that grant Ikonisys license and supply rights to certain DNA probe technology for use with the proprietary Celloptics technology platform developed by Ikonisys.

The license agreement grants Ikonisys a worldwide license under Abbott (Abbott Park, Illinois) patents for the manufacture and sale of DNA probes in conjunction with Chro-motest, a test for the prenatal diagnosis of chromosomal abnormalities using fetal cells from the maternal circulation.

The companies also signed a probe supply agreement granting Ikonisys rights to purchase from Abbott chromosome fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) probes in the fields of pre-implantation genetic diagnosis and automated detection in amniocytes of FISH signals of the most common chromosomal abnormalities.

Under the agreement, Ikonisys will pay Abbott an upfront, non-refundable license fee and royalties on commercialized kits. The supply agreement covers the terms under which Ikonisys will purchase probes from Abbott.

Ikonisys is a privately held medical technology company that is developing products for diagnosing diseases early using chromosome FISH dot counting and rare-cell identification and analysis.

Arcadia Health Services (Southfield, Michigan) said that it has been added to the list of companies certified to provide medical and non-medical staffing services to the U.S. Veterans Administration (VA). Arcadia Health Services is a wholly owned subsidiary of Arcadia Resources.

Arcadia Resources Chairman and CEO John Elliott said, "Placement on the VA provider list is a rigorous process. This is a tremendous opportunity for Arcadia to provide services to veterans and veterans organizations across the country."

According to Kathy Bulgarelli, director of field services, the national contract allows any VA facility access to Arcadia's professional and healthcare staffing services. In the next few weeks, Arcadia Services' catalog will be registered on GSA Advantage, an electronic vending system used by the federal government. By using this system, VA facilities can search for a contracted vendor that provides the products and services they need.