Siemens Healthineers has signed a license and supply agreement with Quanterix that helps it in developing blood tests for neurofilament light chain (NfL) to aid in early disease detection, evidence of progression, and measuring treatment response in people with neurological disorders such as multiple sclerosis (MS).
Siemens Healthineers will gain access to Quanterix’s antibodies necessary for detecting NfL in biological samples, these companies announced in a press release.
Quanterix owns the antibodies as part of its recent acquisition of UmanDiagnostics, which developed key reagents for quantifying NfL in samples of blood and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF; the fluid inside and around the brain and spinal cord).
Since the discovery of elevated NfL levels in MS patients, it has emerged as a promising new biomarker for the disease. Researchers believe it will have an important role in clinical practice for evaluating disease activity and progression.
When nerve fibers (axons) in the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord) are damaged, neurofilament proteins including NfL are released into the CSF, providing a sign of axonal damage and neuronal death.
The biomarker can reflect ongoing neuronal damage, which can be of great value to stage MS disease, help predict patients’ prognosis, and track treatment effectiveness.
Siemens Healthineers’ focus is to develop a blood-based test for NfL.
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