Bristol-Myers Squibb and QIAGEN Sign Agreement for Use of NGS Technology to Develop Gene Expression Profiles for Immuno-Oncology Therapies
NEW YORK and HILDEN, Germany, (June 3, 2017) – Bristol-Myers Squibb Company (NYSE: BMY) and QIAGEN (NASDAQ: QGEN; Frankfurt Prime Standard: QIA) have signed an agreement to explore the use of next-generation sequencing (NGS) technology to develop gene expression profiles (GEPs) as predictive or prognostic tools for use with Bristol-Myers Squibb novel immuno-oncology (I-O) therapies in cancer treatment. This will leverage the combination of Bristol-Myers Squibb’s portfolio of I-O therapies with QIAGEN’s proven track record in developing and commercializing companion and complementary diagnostics as well as QIAGEN’s portfolio of NGS technologies. I-O therapies offer a novel way to treat cancer by using drugs to target the body’s immune system to help fight cancer.
QIAGEN and Bristol-Myers Squibb intend to develop GEPs for several Bristol-Myers Squibb I-O molecules under the initial agreement. The companies also plan to enter into a further agreement to develop diagnostic products using the jointly developed GEPs to expand the use of NGS technology with other Bristol-Myers Squibb I-O therapies.
“Greater precision in the treatment of cancer may enable faster decision making to identify which patient populations are most likely to derive benefit from our immuno-oncology agents,” said Fouad Namouni, M.D., head of Development, Oncology, Bristol-Myers Squibb. “We believe working with QIAGEN will help develop better diagnostic tools to target the most appropriate immunotherapies across a number of different tumor types.”
“We are very pleased to work with Bristol-Myers Squibb to potentially create what could be the first-ever NGS-based companion or complementary diagnostic to provide key insights for personalized decision-making in the rapidly expanding area of immuno-oncology,” said Peer M. Schatz, Chief Executive Officer of QIAGEN. “Our teams at QIAGEN are looking forward to working with Bristol-Myers Squibb to leverage the power of NGS technology to potentially improve outcomes for patients.”
QIAGEN and Bristol-Myers Squibb have been partnering since 2009. A key milestone in this partnership was the FDA approval of the Therascreen KRAS companion/complementary diagnostic assay in 2012.
Bristol-Myers Squibb & Immuno-Oncology: Advancing Oncology Research
At Bristol-Myers Squibb, patients are at the center of everything we do. Our vision for the future of cancer care is focused on researching and developing transformational Immuno-Oncology (I-O) medicines for hard-to-treat cancers that could potentially improve outcomes for these patients.
We are leading the scientific understanding of I-O through our extensive portfolio of investigational compounds and approved agents. Our differentiated clinical development program is studying broad patient populations across more than 50 types of cancers with 14 clinical-stage molecules designed to target different immune system pathways. Our deep expertise and innovative clinical trial designs position us to advance I-O/I-O, I-O/chemotherapy, I-O/targeted therapies and I-O/radiation therapies across multiple tumors and potentially deliver the next wave of therapies with a sense of urgency. We also continue to pioneer research that will help facilitate a deeper understanding of the role of immune biomarkers and how patients’ individual tumor biology can be used as a guide for treatment decisions throughout their journey.
We understand making the promise of I-O a reality for the many patients who may benefit from these therapies requires not only innovation on our part but also close collaboration with leading experts in the field. Our partnerships with academia, government, advocacy and biotech companies support our collective goal of providing new treatment options to advance the standards of clinical practice.
QIAGEN GeneReader NGS System
The GeneReader NGS System provides the first true Sample to Insight NGS workflow for laboratories worldwide – and increasingly also pharmaceutical companies – to take advantage of the power of NGS technology. The system’s integrated bioinformatics for analysis and interpretation of NGS data, as well as a family of gene panels under the GeneRead QIAact brand, enable laboratories to identify gene variations linked to cancers and to deliver actionable molecular insights. The capabilities of this unique system also include high-sensitivity detection in liquid biopsy samples, compatibility with the QIAsymphony automation platform for high-throughput sample processing, and software integration with leading Laboratory Information Management Systems (LIMS). The current version of the GeneReader NGS System is available in the United States for research use only.
About Bristol-Myers Squibb
Bristol-Myers Squibb is a global biopharmaceutical company whose mission is to discover, develop and deliver innovative medicines that help patients prevail over serious diseases. For more information about Bristol-Myers Squibb, visit us at BMS.com or follow us on LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube and Facebook.
QIAGEN N.V., a Netherlands-based holding company, is the leading global provider of Sample to Insight solutions that enable customers to gain valuable molecular insights from samples containing the building blocks of life. Our sample technologies isolate and process DNA, RNA and proteins from blood, tissue and other materials. Assay technologies make these biomolecules visible and ready for analysis. Bioinformatics software and knowledge bases interpret data to report relevant, actionable insights. Automation solutions tie these together in seamless and cost-effective workflows. QIAGEN provides solutions to more than 500,000 customers around the world in Molecular Diagnostics (human healthcare), Applied Testing (forensics, veterinary testing and food safety), Pharma (pharma and biotech companies) and Academia (life sciences research). As of March 31, 2017, QIAGEN employed approximately 4,700 people in over 35 locations worldwide. Further information can be found at http://www.qiagen.com.
Bristol-Myers Squibb Forward-Looking Statement
This press release contains “forward-looking statements” as that term is defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 regarding the research, development and commercialization of pharmaceutical products. Such forward-looking statements are based on current expectations and involve inherent risks and uncertainties, including factors that could delay, divert or change any of them, and could cause actual outcomes and results to differ materially from current expectations. No forward-looking statement can be guaranteed. Among other risks, there can be no guarantee that the project will proceed as planned or that the assays or diagnostics described in this release will be successfully developed or approved for any of the indications described in this release. Forward-looking statements in this press release should be evaluated together with the many uncertainties that affect Bristol-Myers Squibb's business, particularly those identified in the cautionary factors discussion in Bristol-Myers Squibb's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2016 in our Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and our Current Reports on Form 8-K. Bristol-Myers Squibb undertakes no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
QIAGEN Forward-Looking Statement
Certain statements contained in this press release may be considered forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the U.S. Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the U.S. Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. To the extent that any of the statements contained herein relating to QIAGEN's products, collaborations markets, strategy or operating results, including without limitation its expected adjusted net sales and adjusted diluted earnings results, are forward-looking, such statements are based on current expectations and assumptions that involve a number of uncertainties and risks. Such uncertainties and risks include, but are not limited to, risks associated with management of growth and international operations (including the effects of currency fluctuations, regulatory processes and dependence on logistics), variability of operating results and allocations between customer classes, the commercial development of markets for our products to customers in academia, pharma, applied testing and molecular diagnostics; changing relationships with customers, suppliers and strategic partners; competition; rapid or unexpected changes in technologies; fluctuations in demand for QIAGEN's products (including fluctuations due to general economic conditions, the level and timing of customers' funding, budgets and other factors); our ability to obtain regulatory approval of our products; difficulties in successfully adapting QIAGEN's products to integrated solutions and producing such products; the ability of QIAGEN to identify and develop new products and to differentiate and protect our products from competitors' products; market acceptance of QIAGEN's new products and the integration of acquired technologies and businesses. For further information, please refer to the discussions in reports that QIAGEN has filed with, or furnished to, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).