Swift Biosciences and Genomenon Announce Partnership to Accelerate Biomarker Selection for Targeted NGS Panels

Two Ann Arbor biotech companies provide translational researchers a faster, more comprehensive way to design Accel-Amplicon panels for variant discovery and screening studies

ANN ARBOR, Mich., May 23, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Swift Biosciences—the NGS Library Prep company—and Genomenon—the leading genomic literature search engine company— announced today a new partnership to revolutionize the design of targeted gene sequencing panels for precision medicine initiatives. 

Genomenon and Swift will co-market solutions in an integrated offering to make it easier to construct, validate and implement custom NGS assays as a follow-up to whole genome or exome sequencing studies, and dive deep into specific biological pathways. Together, these companies will empower researchers to quickly identify and elucidate mechanisms underlying genetic disease through a targeted sequencing approach, without the need for deep expertise in target curation and prior NGS panel development experience. 

"Identifying biomarkers and designing targeted gene sequencing panels has traditionally been a time-consuming process," said Mike Klein, CEO of Genomenon. "Researchers can significantly shorten their experiment cycle times by working with Genomenon and Swift to select and design their targeted sequencing panels."

Genomenon identifies biomarker targets associated with diseases by applying automated machine learning algorithms to its Mastermind Genomic Search Engine to objectively correlate genes and genetic variants with the quality and frequency of citations from the scientific literature. This approach produces a list of candidate biomarkers associated with a specific disease with reference citations for each biomarker-disease association. The Genomenon team then curates the biomarkers based on the strength and quality of the scientific evidence found in the literature and delivers a set of prioritized candidates for downstream panel design.

Once the list is identified, Swift builds and validates highly informative Accel-Amplicon Custom NGS Panels to deeply sequence targeted gene regions. Swift's technology combines a two-hour, single-tube workflow with highly multiplexed, targeted PCR libraries that are compatible with both Illumina® and Ion Torrent™ sequencing platforms. The unique assay format is also compatible with most sample types, including limited or degraded samples such as FFPE and cfDNA samples. 

Genomenon and Swift, both based in Ann Arbor, bring together unique strengths which enable more applications such as fine mapping, variant discovery and screening, post-GWAS replication, drug target discovery, clinical trial management and monitoring therapeutic efficacy.

"With next generation sequencing becoming more widely adopted, we had to rethink how we enable Amplicon panel design and make it more accessible to the broader translational community," said Candia L. Brown, Swift's vice president of marketing.  "We're excited to partner with Genomenon to remove major bottlenecks and accelerate targeted panels for precision medicine efforts." 


About Genomenon: 
Genomenon connects patient genomic data with evidence from the scientific literature to diagnose and deliver better patient outcomes. Our web-based Mastermind Genomic Search Engine has indexed the scientific evidence from millions of medical articles, cataloging the genetic relationships between DNA and human diseases, including cancer.

Genomenon's biomarker selection algorithms use data from Mastermind to find relevant gene- and variant-specific therapeutic, prognostic, and diagnostic information in the literature, accompanied by literature citations for each association. This data empowers users to make fully informed, evidence-based decisions on which targets to include in their final NGS panel in significantly less time than other methods.    

Nice Insight

Nice Insight, established in 2010, is the research division of That’s Nice, A Science Agency, providing data and analysis from proprietary annual surveys, custom primary qualitative and quantitative research as well as extensive secondary research. Current annual surveys include The Nice Insight Contract Development & Manufacturing (CDMO/CMO), Survey The Nice Insight Contract Research - Preclinical and Clinical (CRO) Survey, The Nice Insight Pharmaceutical Equipment Survey, and The Nice Insight Pharmaceutical Excipients Survey.

Swift Biosciences

Swift Biosciences is the NGS Library Prep company. Based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, the company develops novel library preparation solutions for emerging applications based on next-generation sequencing, including whole genome sequencing, targeted DNA sequencing, and epigenetic analysis. Swift Biosciences' products are designed to help customers analyze challenging biological samples faster, easier, and with greater sensitivity and accuracy, while being compatible with leading instrumentation. Swift Biosciences is the first company to offer library preparation solutions on all three major sequencing platforms, including Pacific Biosciences®, Illumina® and Ion Torrent™.
The company opened its doors in February 2010, and its product development enables new applications in multiple industries, including agrigenomics, pharmaceutical, academic, biotechnology, and oncology research fields.