Thermo Fisher Scientific has partnered with molecular diagnostics company NX Prenatal to develop non-invasive tests for monitoring foetal health in the womb and assess the risk of adverse pregnancy outcomes.

The partners aim to create proteomics assays using a combination of Prenatal’s NeXosome platform and Thermo Fisher’s liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) equipment.

NeXosome technology is designed to enhance maternal blood samples for microparticles that are required to maintain balances between the mother and foetus during pregnancy.

Any abnormalities in these balances are associated with adverse pregnancy outcomes such as preterm birth and preeclampsia.

“Our collaboration with NX Prenatal is aiming to enable us to better evaluate maternal and foetal biomarkers during pregnancy.”

Integration of the NeXosome platform with Thermo Fisher’s LC-MS technology is expected to produce quick and accurate data to analyse exosome-derived proteomic biomarkers. These will offer more information on maternal and foetal health during pregnancy.

Thermo Fisher Scientific clinical research, chromatography and mass spectrometry senior director Brad Hart said: “Our collaboration with NX Prenatal is aiming to enable us to better evaluate maternal and foetal biomarkers during pregnancy that correlate with adverse outcomes such as preterm birth.”

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Hart added that the assays would enable more informed diagnostic decisions for clinical scientists and medical professionals.

NX Prenatal CEO Brian Brohman said: “Our collaboration with Thermo Fisher Scientific brings together our novel NeXosome platform with their leading analytical technology with the goal of optimising clinical mass spectrometry-based workflows, in an effort to provide the precision necessary for personalised diagnostic solutions to improve health outcomes for both mother and child.”

NX Prenatal is engaged in developing assays and non-invasive early warning tools intended to identify subtle molecular changes in the maternal-foetal environment.