Xenomics issued European patent for Transrenal Nucleic Acid Technology for Prenatal Diagnostics

Xenomics, Inc. has announced the issuance of its first European patent "Methods for detection of nucleic acid sequences in urine", EP 1634966 A2 that covers use of its proprietary transrenal nucleic acid technology in the area of prenatal diagnostics and genetic testing.

Transrenal nucleic acids are fragments of DNA and RNA from cells dying throughout the body that cross the kidney barrier from blood to urine and can be used for genetic analysis. Early gender detection will be the first application of transrenal DNA (Tr-DNA) technology for prenatal diagnostics. Using a new proprietary method for isolation of Tr-DNA, Xenomics' scientists successfully detected sequences of a single copy Y chromosome-specific SRY gene in urine of women pregnant with male fetuses from the 6th week of pregnancy. The test is developed for pregnancies with a risk of gender-linked diseases such as hemophilia, Fragile X syndrome and others. At the same time the gender detection test can have much broader applications. Successful early detection of a single copy gene that originates from the fetus in the urine of pregnant women indicates that other prenatal tests, e.g. detection of Rh incompatibility, which can cause severe anemia in a newborn baby, and many others can be developed using the same approach.

"We are glad that issuance of our first European patent in addition to our strong US patent portfolio coincides with significant progress in the development of our technology," commented Samuil Umansky CSO of Xenomics. "Since use of Tr-DNA for molecular diagnostics is a platform technology, success in one area based on significant improvements of Tr-DNA isolation and detection methodologies will accelerate test development in other fields including oncology, infectious diseases, and transplantation."

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