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  • Proteomics International Laboratories (PIQ) signs a research agreement to develop the world’s first non-invasive test for endometriosis
  • The partnership with the University of Melbourne and the Royal Women’s Hospital will build on a study by Proteomics that identified protein biomarkers in blood that could be used to test for the condition
  • The parties have agreed to bear their own costs, with Proteomics further contributing a nominal fee to assist sample retrieval
  • Leading researchers participating in the agreement say they’re hoping to prevent years of suffering with a blood test that can be ordered by a family GP
  • Proteomics is up 2.19 per cent, trading at $1.17 at 1:45 pm AEST

Proteomics International Laboratories (PIQ) has penned a research agreement to develop a non-invasive test for endometriosis.

The partnership with the University of Melbourne and the Royal Women’s Hospital aims to develop the world’s first blood test for the condition, which is said to affect one in nine women.

Endometriosis occurs when tissue grows outside of the uterus in other areas of the body where it does not belong. This can affect the reproductive system and frequently occurs in the bowel, bladder and other pelvic organs, causing pelvic pain and potential infertility.

Currently, there is no simple way to test for endometriosis.

On average it takes a woman seven to twelve years to be diagnosed. The current gold standard for detection is an invasive laparoscopy, in which a camera is inserted into the pelvis through a small cut in the abdominal wall.

The collaboration will build on a study by Proteomics that identified protein biomarkers in blood that could be used to test for the condition.

A key aspect to this research is a world-leading endometriosis database managed by the Royal Women’s Hospital — the largest and most in-depth in Australia. This contains anonymous biological samples and survey information from more than 900 women with the disorder. This will be used to validate the panel of biomarkers discovered by Proteomics.

The parties have agreed to bear their own costs, with Proteomics further contributing a nominal fee to assist sample retrieval. Proteomics will retain ownership of its background intellectual property and will grant each other party a non-exclusive licence to use its background IP.

The three organisations will also join together to research new biomarkers, or “fingerprints” for the disease. The study builds upon a recently announced $3.9 million Medical Research Future Fund grant awarded to the University of Melbourne to improve diagnosis and treatment of endometriosis.

The Women’s Director of Research, Professor Peter Rogers, and leading endometriosis researcher, Dr Sarah Holdsworth-Carson, said that a non-invasive test for endometriosis could save women years of suffering.

“We’re hoping to prevent this with a simple, accessible blood test that can be ordered by a family GP.”

Proteomics was up 2.19 per cent, trading at $1.17 at 1:45 pm AEST.

PIQ by the numbers
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