Oncocyte acquires Chronix Biomedical to enter immune therapy monitoring market


Oncocyte Corporation has closed its previously announced acquisition of Chronix Biomedical, a US-based molecular diagnostics company that develops blood tests used in cancer treatment and also organ transplantation.

The deal enables Oncocyte to foray into blood-based immune-therapy monitoring.

Announced in February 2021, the deal was wrapped up last month.

As per the terms of the deal, Oncocyte paid $2.675 million in cash and issued $1.5 million worth shares to Chronix Biomedical apart from liabilities under $5.5 million. Besides, Oncocyte had agreed to pay a revenue share on the net collected revenues for certain tests and services for certain periods, and to pay a mix of cash or its shares of up to $14 million if some milestones are met.

Oncocyte acquires Chronix Biomedical to enter immune therapy monitoring market

Oncocyte acquires Chronix Biomedical to enter immune therapy monitoring market. Photo courtesy of Michal Jarmoluk from Pixabay.

Oncocyte has acquired the intellectual property and technology for Chronix Biomedical TheraSure-Copy Number Instability (CNI) Monitor test for immune therapy monitoring.  The CNI test is a blood-based test unlike current methods does not require any upfront tumor tissue sample.

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Apart from the CNI test, Oncocyte gains Chronix Biomedical’s organ transplant technology and the related patent portfolio.

Ron Andrews – President and CEO of Oncocyte said: “Once available, we believe the CNI test will allow physicians to begin monitoring patients for treatment efficacy more quickly given the CNI test requires only a blood sample.

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“In contrast, getting a result from the emerging tests for monitoring can take significantly longer as these tests start with the time consuming and costly genetic sequencing of a patient’s tissue sample. According to our voice of customer work, many later stage cancer biopsies do not provide enough tissue available to complete the analysis.”

The California-based Oncocyte has also acquired Chronix Biomedical’s lab in Germany and its development and business team based in the European Union.

The molecular diagnostics company expects to launch the CNI test in Europe from Germany as a pharma service by the end of the current quarter. Once the technology transfer is done to its US facilities, Oncocyte plans to launch the test for only research use in domestic immune therapy clinical trials during Q4 2021.

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Dr. Ekkehard Schuetz – former CEO and Chief Medical Officer of Chronix Biomedical, who is now General Manager and CMO of Oncocyte Europe said: “By becoming part of Oncocyte, we believe our CNI monitoring test, together with DetermaIO, has the potential to become a much more powerful tool for oncologists as they will have a comprehensive solution for two of the biggest challenges in immune therapy: better identifying patients who are most likely to respond to treatment, and then monitoring for treatment efficacy and the development of resistance.”

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