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ANN ARBOR, Mich., June 13, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Zomedica Pharmaceuticals Corp. (NYSE American: ZOM) (ZOM.V), a veterinary diagnostic and pharmaceutical company, today announced that it has completed initial development work on a blood-borne lymphoma cancer assay intended for use with its canine cancer liquid biopsy platform.
According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, one in four dogs will develop cancer during their lifetime. Lymphomas represent approximately 10-25% of all cancers diagnosed in dogs.
The lymphoma assay, designated ZM-022, is designed to identify specific genetic abnormalities using fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). FISH tests are regularly used for cancers in human medicine, such as the HER2 breast cancer test. The assay is being developed for use on Zomedica’s liquid biopsy platform, which is expected to be available for sale in 2020.
As previously announced, Zomedica is also developing assays for the detection of hemangiosarcoma and osteosarcoma for use with its liquid biopsy platform, designated ZM-017. Lymphoma, osteosarcoma, and hemangiosarcoma are three of the top five most commonly diagnosed malignant canine cancers.
Zomedica expects that the out-of-pocket cost incurred by pet owners for these assays will be a fraction of the cost of current testing methods, which can be thousands of dollars depending on the presentation.
Lymphoma often presents with swollen lymph nodes, allowing for fine needle aspiration of the tumor for initial diagnosis. Zomedica’s biomarker study design included samples from B-cell and T-cell tumors as well as peripheral blood samples from lymphoma patients and healthy patients. Zomedica was able to identify these genetic abnormalities consistently to differentiate between cancerous and non-cancerous B-cells and T-cells on a peripheral blood draw. Additional prognostic tests involve the removal of a lymph node and can take at least a week or longer to obtain, delaying treatment and allowing for progression of this aggressive form of cancer.
Zomedica has submitted patent applications for its lymphoma assay.
“We are excited to add this important assay to the development work we are doing on our liquid biopsy platform,” said Dr. Stephanie Morley, Chief Operations Officer and Vice President of Product Development. “We expect that if we successfully complete the development of these assays, our liquid biopsy platform will offer veterinarians and their teams the opportunity to make better treatment decisions more quickly and at a lower cost compared to existing technologies, creating better outcomes for their patients and pet owners. The development of multiple assays for our liquid biopsy platform demonstrates the versatility of the platform.”
Zomedica anticipates beginning verification and branding efforts for its lymphoma assay by the fourth quarter of 2019 with validation to commence in 2020. Assuming successful completion of validation, Zomedica expects to commence commercialization of this platform and its initial assays in 2020.
Based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Zomedica (NYSE American: ZOM) (ZOM.V) is a veterinary diagnostic and pharmaceutical company creating products for companion animals (canine, feline and equine) by focusing on the unmet needs of clinical veterinarians. Zomedica’s product portfolio will include novel diagnostics and innovative therapeutics that emphasize patient health and practice health. With a team that includes clinical veterinary professionals, it is Zomedica’s mission to give veterinarians the opportunity to lower costs, increase productivity, and grow revenue while better serving the animals in their care. For more information, visit www.ZOMEDICA.com.
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