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Ridge Diagnostics enters licensing agreement for depression blood test

April 9, 2012
by Nick Zubko
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Ridge Diagnostics has announced it has entered into an exclusive agreement with Ameritox Ltd., a provider of medication monitoring, for the license rights to its proprietary developmental blood test MDDScore, a multiple biomarker analysis for Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) for primary care and pain physicians.

As part of the agreement, Ameritox has agreed to make an undisclosed equity investment in Ridge and commit to a next-stage clinical development program.

“Ameritox investment in Ridge will likely accelerate the MDDScore test development and advance access to millions of patients already under the care of primary-care and pain-management physicians,” said Lonna J. Williams, CEO of Ridge Diagnostics. “Ameritox longstanding investments in diagnostic science, and now in the Ridge technology, validate the importance of the MDDScore and demonstrate their commitment to improving patient well-being.”

The MDDScore test developed by Ridge Diagnostics measures ten biomarker levels associated with factors such as inflammation, development and maintenance of neurons and interaction between brain structures involved with stress response and other key biological functions. Measurements are analyzed to produce an MDDScore which may help physicians determine whether a patient has major depression.

“Biomarkers are an important emerging scientific tool to better understanding illness, and may enable health professionals to improve the accuracy of diagnosis and help match the right treatment to the right patient,” said Ancelmo Lopes, CEO, Ameritox Ltd. “Personalizing care offers the best use for precious healthcare resources. We are committed to providing physicians with tools to support their care decisions. We are excited to launch clinical trials to evaluate the utility of MDDScore in primary care and pain medicine settings."

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