A biomarker panel to quantify lncRNAs linked to cardiac disease

2018 - 11 - 05

Researchers from LIH’s Cardiovascular Research Unit identified more than 3000 cardiac-enriched long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) in peripheral blood samples that can serve as biomarkers to characterise patients with diverse cardiac disorders and toxicities. Two biotech companies, Firalis S.A. and Celemics Inc., now work with these research findings to commercialise a unique proprietary lncRNA panel.

Identification of increasing numbers of lncRNAs, their involvement in many important pathophysiological pathways, and in particular their tissue-specific expression, make them a very interesting source for the identification of new therapeutic and diagnostic targets. A collaborative work between members of the Cardiolinc™ network, including LIH and the “Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Vaudois” in Lausanne, Switzerland, as well as the company Firalis S.A., recently revealed 3233 cardiac-enriched lncRNAs in peripheral blood of which 1066 have never been previously described. Those shall now be used in a biomarker diagnostic product for research and clinical applications.

Mid-September 2018, Firalis S.A., developer and provider of biomarker diagnostic products and bioanalytical services for research and diagnostic use based in Huningue, France, and Celemics, Inc., provider of targeted enrichment of genomic technology for Next-Generation Sequencing (NGS) application, instruments and reagents for molecular biology based in Seoul, South Korea, announced the signature of a development and supply agreement that will enable Firalis S.A. to commercialise an NGS-based product named “FiMICS" to quantify cardiac-enriched lncRNAs.

 ‘We are very impressed by the analytical performance of the FiMICS panel that easily quantifies thousands of cardiac-enriched lncRNAs in peripheral whole blood samples’, says Prof Hüseyin Firat, CEO of Firalis S.A. ‘The panel will be a great source of new therapeutic and diagnostic discoveries in the coming years for pathologies in which heart is involved.’ Dr Hyoki Kim, CEO of Celemics Inc. adds: ‘We are very happy to help Firalis for the development of this innovative tool that should bring a fresh wind in the medical sector and open new possibilities in R&D pipelines of pharmaceutical and diagnostic companies’.

The availability of the lncRNA panel opens a great avenue for new therapeutics and personalised medicine tools for diverse primary and secondary cardiac diseases, cardiac toxicities, and for drug development. Dr Yvan Devaux, who leads the Cardiovascular Research Unit at LIH’s Department of Population Health LIH and chairs the Cardiolinc™ network is proud about the future application of research findings from his laboratory: ‘FiMICS will foster investigations in multifactorial cardiac disorders such as heart failure for the patient’s benefit.’ Lu Zhang, research engineer in his group, was strongly involved in the work.'

This news article is adapted from a press release edited by Firalis S.A. and Celemics Inc.