Lab Canada

Strategic collaboration to explore pharmacogenomics

Montreal, QC June 10, 2003 First Genetic Trust and Galileo Genomics say they are collaborating to provide innovative pharmacogenomics research capabilities to the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry.

The collaboration is intended to create a research resource of large-scale clinical networks from Quebec and the US. It is also targetting new pharmacogenomics services in a variety of therapeutic areas, including inflammation and immunological diseases, cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, and CNS/psychiatric disorders.

Galileo Genomics will provide derived data from its extensively phenotyped patients from the Quebec founder population as well as other global founder populations. The genetic characteristics of these founder populations make them ideal for efficiently identifying genes and pharmacogenomic markers associated with disease and drug response. In addition, the company’s capabilities in high-throughput genotyping, bioinformatics and statistical analysis are intended to accelerate genome-wide genetic discovery efforts.

First Genetic Trust says it provides access to over 10 million patients in the US who can be recruited for large-scale pharmacogenomic studies to replicate and validate the gene discoveries made in the founder populations. The company is providing its genetic banking platform to manage these studies and to create dynamic networks of patients in specific therapeutic and drug response areas. In addition, its computational genomics capabilities will be brought to the collaboration, including its genetic pattern discovery and data-mining tools, which will be used by the two companies to identify complex correlations between genes associated with drug response.

“The US FDA is on the threshold of creating a regulatory framework to allow pharmacogenomics to better treat individuals through improved drug development," says Dr John Hooper, president and CEO of Galileo Genomics. "The combined assets of First Genetic Trust and Galileo will allow us to assist the pharmaceutical industry to develop safer and more effective drugs.”