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ValiRx wins new US patent for cancer screening gene biomarker


ValiRx (LON:VAL), a life science company with a focus on cancer diagnostics and therapeutics for personalised medicine, said it has been granted a patent in the US for a cancer screening method, using specific gene biomarkers in the field of genetics and oncology.
The granting of this latest patent means that ValiRx now has biomarker patent protection in both the US and across Europe, alongside granted and pending patents for its therapeutic technologies across Europe, the US, Canada and Australia.
This latest patent concerns the method or process by which gene biomarkers can be used in the detection or identification of a patient's susceptibility to T-cell lymphoma in the skin - a type of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma - and also for improving treatment methods.
The use of biomarkers in oncology therapeutics is one of the fastest growing areas in cancer diagnosis and monitoring.

In combination with specific therapeutic approaches, it is the growth of personalised medicine, particularly in cancer research, alongside support from regulatory agencies that are the key factors behind the increase in demand for biomarkers, ValiRx said in a statement.
Since biomarkers help in predicting patient response to a compound, personalised medicines are increasingly using biomarkers to identify the patient population set that is more likely to respond to a particular drug therapy.

Personalised medicines are also increasingly being used along with targeted cancer therapies and as personalised medicines gain more importance and popularity, the demand for suitable companion biomarkers is also expected to increase.
Chief executive Dr Satu Vainikka said: "This grant significantly strengthens our patent portfolio and it is a particularly pleasing endorsement, coming as it does from under the rigorous scrutiny of the US patent authorities. I am very pleased by the continuing validation of our technologies and of our approach to therapeutics and biomarkers themselves.”

Citing recent research, ValiRx said the global cancer biomarkers market for 2007 was estimated to be US$3.6 billion and is expected to grow at a compounded annual growth rate of 6.3 per cent to reach US$6.3 billion by 2016.

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Price: 0.105 GBX

Market: AIM
Market Cap: £1.61 m

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