Oxford Gene Technology (OGT), the molecular genetics company, has announced it is initiating a clinical trial of a new non-invasive prenatal test (NIPT) for Down’s syndrome.
It’s microarray technology has significant advantages over other methods, reducing waiting times for results and costs.
John Anson, Executive Vice President R&D, OGT said: “Non-invasive prenatal testing has the potential to more accurately identify the need for additional invasive testing of high-risk pregnancies. We have adapted a previously invasive methodology into a non-invasive test to detect chromosomal abnormalities; our microarray-based approach requires only a small sample of maternal blood instead of an invasive amniocentesis procedure. Our hope is that this test, once it is clinically validated, will be widely adopted by clinical testing laboratories to ensure more pregnant women and their clinicians can access this highly sensitive, rapid and safe procedure.”
In pre-clinical trials the Begbroke Science Park firm’s test showed significant improvement against the current standard of care, the combined test. The Company is now initiating a larger clinical study to support the launch of a CE-marked product. In addition to detecting Down’s, it is expected that in the future the technology will also identify other chromosomal abnormalities.