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More to offer for clinical bioinformatics in oncology
01-08-2019
by Jeffrey Bouley  |  Email the author
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REDWOOD CITY, Calif. & HILDEN, Germany—Looking to significantly expand its decision-support solutions while offering a broader range of software, content and service-based solutions, Dutch company QIAGEN N.V. has entered into an agreement to acquire Concord, Mass.-based N-of-One Inc., a privately held U.S. molecular decision support company and pioneer in clinical interpretation services for complex genomic data. The addition of the U.S. company to QIAGEN’s fold also is expected to provide customers with greater access to valuable genomic data assets and service offerings.
 
QIAGEN is anticipating enhancing its industry leading position is various areas with the newfound access to N-of-One’s MarkerMine database subsequent to the acquisition. As QIAGEN puts it in the news release announcing the deal, “N-of-One’s technology-enabled, yet human-driven, services and the proprietary MarkerMine database are planned to be integrated into QIAGEN Clinical Insight (QCI), enhancing this industry-leading clinical offering with medical interpretation and real-world evidence insights and offering robust decision support in oncology.”
 
The proprietary database, services and processes of N-of-One produce case-specific reports based on data generated with molecular tests, including next-generation sequencing (NGS) technologies, and deliver clinical evidence for biomarkers and a list of therapeutic options for consideration. N-of-One also provides patient-specific clinical trial matching services and a somatic cancer database with more than 125,000 anonymized patient samples. This data will be added to the patient samples currently available in QCI, further increasing QIAGEN’s position in offering what it says is “by far the largest genomics knowledge base.”
 
“N-of-One has made tremendous strides in molecular oncology decision support, and their combination with QIAGEN’s own pre-curated knowledge base of evidence will provide powerful new tools to expand our abilities to deliver patient-specific insights,” said Jonathan Sheldon, senior vice president of QIAGEN’s Bioinformatics Business Area. “We look forward to combining N-of-One’s Precision Insights and Rapid Insights reporting tools, as well as their MarkerMine database, into our QCI portfolio, which is a leading integrated solution for NGS analysis and interpretation. This will further strengthen QIAGEN’s leadership in clinical decision support and provide customers with solutions powered by real-world evidence Insights.”
 
For her part, N-of-One CEO Christine M. Cournoyer added, “We are excited about expanding N-of-One’s impact. With QIAGEN’s resources and reach, our combined technology will provide more patients with greater potential therapeutic strategies.”
 
QIAGEN believes the addition of N-of-One advances its bioinformatics strategy while also providing access to new opportunities emerging to support healthcare providers and payers with access to real-world evidence (RWE) insights, with QIAGEN noting the following:
  • Strong brand recognition: Oncology is the most advanced area for clinical decision support use, and N-of-One is one of the best-known brands in oncology decision support. It is well established with labs pharma companies and payers. The acquisition will highly complement QIAGEN’s leadership in bioinformatics and will benefit the already very rapid growth of QCI.
  • Addition of expert-delivered, professional patient data review to QCI: The combination of N-of-One and QCI platforms creates a strong foundation for QIAGEN to add a new level of engagement with the professional patient data review services offered by N-of-One and provided by its employees, which together will improve the overall QCI offering for customers.
  • Addition of clinical trial data and analyses to QCI: N-of-One has developed capabilities and tools to add insights from clinical trials data to insights derived from literature. This adds an important data layer for healthcare providers to achieve improved test interpretation and decision support, and also for payers to develop evidence frameworks for reimbursement and other protocols for genomic data interpretation.
  • Real-world evidence solutions as attractive growth opportunity: The addition of N-of-One’s MarkerMine database and commercial data rights creates an attractive and expandable link into real-world evidence insights. Genomic Insights/analytics services can be commercialized to pharmaceutical industry partners—in particular to more than 25 companies with which QIAGEN has deep companion diagnostic co-development relationships—to support patient cohort analytics, patient stratification, trial protocol design, assay design and interpretation, trial accrual and market forecasting, patient-to-trial matching and other features.
According to QIAGEN, “QCI is the leading integrated solution for NGS analysis and interpretation,” and the addition of N-of-One is expected to make it even more valuable for labs in analyzing and interpreting NGS data in a broad range of applications. QIAGEN recently announced major improvements to this offering that is anchored by applications for oncology and hereditary diseases. Powered by the QIAGEN Knowledge Base, QCI can annotate, interpret and report NGS variants in the context of over 10 million relevant biomedical findings while building the user’s internal experiential knowledge base. The best-in-class workflow minimizes the complexity, time and cost of determining clinical significance and actionability of NGS variants.
 
In other recent news, QIAGEN announced not too long ago that it and NeoGenomics have joined forces once again, exploring more ways that their respective specialties complement each other to provide mutually beneficial products and services to customers. Their latest master service agreement, announced in late 2018, paves the way for better access to precision medicine for cancer patients, with the companies saying their partnership will help ensure that patients and their oncologists will have immediate access to FDA-approved diagnostic tests in tandem with novel cancer drugs.
 
Code: E01091902

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