Assay technologies provider Qiagen has partnered with molecular diagnostics developer Ares Genetics for the development of new bioinformatics and assay solutions to deal with antibiotic-resistant pathogens.
The alliance gives Qiagen exclusive licence to use Ares Genetics’ artificial intelligence (AI) based antimicrobial resistance database, called ARESdb.
Qiagen also acquired the licence for leveraging AREStools bioinformatics tools and workflows in its bioinformatics products and services for researchers.
The collaboration also involves a non-exclusive worldwide licence for the development and commercialisation of molecular research assays by combining ARESdb content and Qiagen next-generation sequencing (NGS) and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) solutions.
Ares Genetics CEO and managing director Andreas Posch said: “With Qiagen as a prime supplier of industry-leading applications for the analysis and interpretation of biological data, we are well positioned to make ARESdb a key resource for cutting-edge research in the pressing healthcare issue of antimicrobial resistance.”
Qiagen plans to incorporate the ARESdb content with its CLC Genomics Workbench to create a software-as-a-service portal to provide standardised analysis for research and allow the flexible design of assays.
The new solution will expand Qiagen’s existing sample preparation solutions, GeneGlobe portal and bioinformatics solutions for antimicrobial resistance research.
Qiagen Bioinformatics senior vice-president and head Jonathan Sheldon said: “Antibiotic-resistant diseases are an urgent threat to public health, as resistance undermines the effective prevention and treatment of an ever-increasing range of infections.
“This global problem cries out for molecular insights that can lead to new understanding and therapeutic approaches. Partnering with Ares Genetics to leverage their genomic content with Qiagen’s expertise in bioinformatics, NGS and PCR technologies, we will expand our portfolio of solutions to help the global community fight these infections.”
Antimicrobial resistance is responsible for nearly 700,000 deaths each year. A recent study revealed that indiscriminate antibiotics use would lead to an increase of ten million deaths a year by 2050, as well as drive the growth of resistance.
Last year, Latex glove manufacturer Hartalega, together with research and development company Chemical Intelligence UK, launched the world’s first non-leaching antimicrobial medical gloves in an attempt to tackle the growing issue of hospital superbugs.
Additional reporting by Charlotte Edwards.