|Paradigm Genetics and University of North Carolina Enter Collaboration To Identify Biomarkers of Choline Deficiency|
RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C., Sept. 30 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Paradigm Genetics, Inc. (Nasdaq: PDGM - News), a biotechnology company, today announced it has entered into a research collaboration with the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill to identify biomarkers indicative of choline deficiency, a physiological state that has been implicated in the onset of liver damage in humans.
Under the terms of the agreement, UNC-CH will provide to Paradigm serum and urine samples collected as part of its research to determine the required daily amount of choline. Paradigm Genetics researchers will then perform biochemical analyses on the biofluid samples and identify the pathways and mechanisms that may be involved.
"Choline deficiency is known to cause progressive liver damage and has been associated with increased risk of hepatic cancer in experimental models. Current serum markers of liver injury lack the sensitivity and specificity to differentiate among patients with simple or more complex forms of liver disease, and often fail to signal its early onset," said Thomas J. Colatsky, Ph.D., Vice President of Healthcare Research for Paradigm. "This collaboration extends our access to clinical samples from patients with hepatotoxicity, and provides us with an opportunity to continue to build our portfolio of proprietary biomarkers of liver injury."
Choline is an essential nutrient that plays a critical role in normal cellular membrane composition and repair, normal brain function and normal cardiovascular function. The human body does not synthesize enough choline to meet its own demands; however, choline is widely distributed in foods. The Food and Nutrition Board of the National Academy of Sciences has recently recommended increased choline intake for pregnant and nursing women to help ensure normal fetal brain development. Choline intake may also be helpful in some liver diseases, manic conditions, cognitive disorders, tardive dyskinesia and, possibly, some cancers.
About Paradigm Genetics
Paradigm is a biotechnology company that increases R&D productivity by focusing its integrated suite of technologies on the product development cycle, from target discovery to subsequent enhancement of the safety and efficacy profiles of development candidates in agriculture and human health. Paradigm uses a systems biology approach to understand gene function in the context of biological pathways, to develop assays and biomarkers for molecular diagnostic solutions tailored to the needs of our partners. Paradigm's proprietary Gene to Cell to System(TM) approach has four major components: gene expression profiling, biochemical profiling (also known as metabolomics), phenotypic profiling and data integration and coherence. For more information, visit www.paradigmgenetics.com.