2022-10-19| Partnerships

Illumina Teams Up With GenoScreen in Eradicating Tuberculosis

by Max Heirich
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Illumina announced a partnership with genomics company GenoScreen for the acceleration of the World Health Organization’s (WHO) mission of eradicating Tuberculosis(TB). The goal of the partnership between the two firms is the expansion of detection and treatment in countries most affected by TB.

The partnership includes the distribution of products from both companies, with the WHO’s eradication end goal set for 2035.

Related Article: UNC Chapel Hill Research on Long Release Drugs for Fighting Tuberculosis

Eradicating Tuberculosis In Just Over A Decade

The WHO adopted the post-2015 End TB Strategy in 2014, aiming for the eradication of the disease throughout the world. Serving as a blueprint for countries, the strategy’s goal is the reduction of TB cases by 80% and TB death by 90%. 

Though most high-income countries do not see many cases, some still do occur there. However, a majority of cases take place in low to middle-income countries. About half of all cases pop up in the countries China, Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, and South Africa. As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, TB deaths saw an increase for the first time in decades. However, the pandemic also resulted in a larger rollout of Illumina’s NGS platform capacity, whose implementation the company intends to use in its efforts against TB. 

The partnership formed is centered around the rollout of Illumina’s sequencing products and GenoScreen’s Deeplex® Myc-TB assay. Deeplex is a sequencer with the ability to test, detect the genotype, and predict any potential antibiotic resistance. According to Illumina, Deeplex, in conjunction with Illumina’s own NGS sequencing platforms allows for “rapid determination of extensive drug resistance profiles and TB strain types affecting patients.”

On the announcement, André Tordeux, CEO of GenoScreen, said, “As a world specialist in TB genomic solutions, we envision this partnership with Illumina as an accelerator for the global deployment of our Deeplex Myc-TB assay, especially for countries with the highest needs.”

With Illumina and GenoScreen’s new partnership in support of the WHO’s initiative, the eradication of TB by 2035 seems like a more tangible possibility.

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