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Summit Biolabs, CCPM to Develop Liquid Biopsy Tests for COVID-19, Head and Neck Cancer

NEW YORK – Molecular diagnostic startup Summit Biolabs said on Wednesday that it has partnered with the Colorado Center for Personalized Medicine (CCPM) to develop and commercialize saliva-based liquid biopsy tests for head and neck cancer, COVID-19, and other viral diseases.

As part of the agreement, Aurora, Colorado-based Summit Biolabs will integrate CCPM's research biobank, which contains clinical data from more than 8.7 million deidentified patient records, with personalized genomic information to develop the assays.

Summit Biolabs is developing a liquid biopsy platform called HNKlear, which the firm said will provide "effective, more accurate, and earlier detection of head and neck cancer" than standard diagnostic methods.

"This collaboration broadens and strengthens Summit Biolabs' ability to bring to market life-changing saliva liquid-biopsy tests that ultimately enable better treatment and improved outcomes for patients," Bob Blomquist, CEO at Summit Biolabs, said in a statement.

Financial details of the agreement were not disclosed.

"Collaborations like this are crucial in moving research forward and advancing and expanding clinical testing to as many members of our community as possible," Kathleen Barnes, professor and director of CCPM at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, said in a statement. "Working with Summit Biolabs and leveraging technology developed by our colleagues … will help us achieve these goals and establish a non-invasive testing process that will benefit patients in Colorado and beyond."