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Siemens Healthineers, Novartis Ink Deal to Develop Assays With Initial Focus on MS Therapeutics

NEW YORK ─ Siemens Healthineers on Monday announced a collaboration agreement with Novartis Pharma to design, develop, and commercialize diagnostic tests for therapeutic products across Novartis' therapeutic pipeline.

Financial and other terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

As part of the collaboration, an initial program aims at the development of a serum neurofilament light chain (NfL) immunoassay to support Novartis' MS program and other neuroscience programs. Serum NfL is a biomarker for nerve cell injury measured in cerebral spinal fluid and blood.

Erlangen, Germany-based Siemens Healthineers said that the collaboration will leverage its expertise in the development of clinical assays that can run on its Advia Centaur and Atellica immunoassay platforms, which are distributed globally in hospitals, reference laboratories, and specialty laboratories.

The company said that the addition of serum NfL would expand its laboratory diagnostics neurology test menu, which also targets AB42 and tau assays for the clinical diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease. Siemens Healthineers noted that the US Food and Drug Administration recently granted Breakthrough Device Designation for its AB42 and tau assays.

Further, Siemens Healthcare Laboratory, in Berkeley, California, offers a range of neurobiomarker testing services, including serum NfL, for biopharmaceutical company therapy development programs.