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IntegraGen to investigate the genetics of deafness


Paris, France; 27 April 2005 ….. IntegraGen, the personalized medicines company, announced today that it will be part of an EU consortium, EuroHear, which has been awarded €12.5M to carry out research into hearing impairments. IntegraGen’s role will be to identify genes that predispose individuals to presbycusis, the most common form of inherited hearing impairment. The Company will apply its innovative GenomeHIP™ technology, as part of genome-wide linkage studies, in order to identify disease susceptibility genes.

Dr Jörg Hager, CSO of IntegraGen commented: “We are extremely pleased that the potential of GenomeHIP is being fully recognised and that we are being given the opportunity to use it to make a significant contribution to important studies such as this one. The European consortium approach is very exciting, as it brings a wide-range of expertise from many countries to work together in synergy. We are looking forward to contributing to some ground-breaking, medically relevant discoveries.”

Presbycusis affects individuals later in life, which often means that it is not possible to obtain genetic information from patient’s parents, limiting the utility of traditional approaches to investigating disease genetics. IntegraGen’s GenomeHIP technology overcomes this hurdle by being powerful enough to obtain significant results from relatively small numbers of sibling pairs (brothers and sisters). GenomeHIP also has the advantage of being much quicker and more precise than classical microsatellite or SNP marker-based methods.

The EuroHear project involves a consortium of 25 institutions from 12 different European countries. It will investigate developmental and functional aspects of hearing and the molecular defects underlying hereditary hearing impairments. The results of the research will improve our understanding of the condition and help lead to better therapy and management.


About IntegraGen
IntegraGen SA uses its unique genomic analysis expertise to identify genes associated with complex diseases and to develop diagnostic tests. The Company applies its innovative gene mapping technology, GenomeHIP® (Genome Hybrid Identity Profiling), to rapidly discover genetic loci that are implicated in complex, multi-factorial diseases. GenomeHIP® is a major advance that overcomes the limitations of existing marker based familial linkage study methods.

IntegraGen is applying its discoveries to develop a series of innovative IntegraTests™ and is poised to become a leader in the rapidly growing field of predictive medicine. The Company will be a fully integrated provider of genetic tests that can be used to predict, prevent, diagnose and tailor personalized treatments for complex diseases. Testing will be provided as a service through Expert Centers, which will also provide expert analysis and genetic counseling from an accredited MD-geneticist. The Company’s first Expert Center has been established in Bonn, Germany, to provide the Company’s first testing service for MODY diabetes (Mature Onset Diabetes of the Young) testing. The Bonn center will become operational in April this year.

The Company's strategy is to develop molecular diagnostic tools for selected disease areas with high medical need. IntegraGen's in-house programs are focused on neurological disorders, including autism and bi-polar disorder, and metabolic disorders, such as obesity and type 2 diabetes mellitus. The IntegraTest for autism, the world’s first genetic test for autism, is currently in the clinical validation phase of development, with an anticipated launch in 2006. The Company’s IntegraTest for type-2 diabetes is expected to enter clinical validation in 2006.

Founded in July 2000, IntegraGen has 34 employees and is based in the French Genopole of Evry, near Paris, France, and in Bonn, Germany.

More information can be found at www.integragen.com


About the EuroHear project

The EuroHear project has two inter-related objectiv


Publisher Contact Information:

IntegraGen SA
+33 (0)1 60 91 09 00
jan.mous@integragen.com

Company profile of IntegraGen SA
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