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Bristol-Myers Squibb and Meso Scale Discovery have signed an agreement to develop diagnostic assays which measure cerebrospinal fluid biomarkers for use in Alzheimer’s disease research.

Under the deal, both companies will develop diagnostic tests based on the Meso Scale Discovery multi-array technology platform, a proprietary combination of patterned arrays and electrochemiluminescence detection, allowing a number of measurements with sensitivity and convenience.

Meso Scale Discovery will commercialise the assays for Alzheimer’s disease research and drug development, and plans to launch the assays in the second quarter of 2012.

Bristol-Myers Squibb Global Clinical Research vice president Jane Tiller said the partnership with Meso Scale Discovery demonstrates Bristol-Myers Squibb’s commitment to advancing the science of Alzheimer’s disease research.

"These assays could provide the Alzheimer’s disease research community with an important tool to help advance understanding of this complex and devastating disease and may lead to advances in the diagnosis and treatment of Alzheimer’s disease," Tiller added.

Meso Scale Discovery president and CEO Jacob Wohlstadter said the goal of the collaboration is to develop biomarker tests for use in research and diagnostics.

"Bristol-Myers Squibb is a leader in the field of Alzheimer’s disease research and brings a clinical development perspective that pairs well with our experience in developing high-quality assays," Wohlstadter added.

The terms of the agreement have not been disclosed. Alzheimer’s is a progressive brain disease that impairs memory, interferes with thinking and finally destroys the ability of an individual to carry out simple tasks.

Bristol-Myers Squibb is a biopharmaceutical company that aims to discover, develop and deliver innovative medicines to help patients prevail over serious diseases. Meso Scale Discovery, a division of Meso Scale Diagnostics, develops and markets solutions for multiplex biological assays, including assays for biomarkers, cytokines and phosphoproteins.

Image: Bristol-Myers Squibb’s R&D facility Princeton Rd, Princeton, New Jersey, US. Photo: Coolcaesar.