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Roche & Eli Lilly team up to develop blood test for early AD detection

Global pharmaceutical leaders Roche and Eli Lilly announced a collaboration agreement to support the development of Roche's Elecsys Amyloid Plasma Panel (EAPP), a blood test aimed at facilitating the early diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease (AD).

The companies stated in a joint media release on March 22, 2023, that today, barriers to early and accurate diagnosis of AD persist, and around the world up to 75% of people living with AD symptoms but without a diagnosis.

To address the increasing strain that AD is placing on healthcare systems, the companies stated that it will be critical to make a person's journey to a diagnosis faster and more accessible. This will eventually allow access to new treatments as they become available.

Roche further stated that if approved, the EAPP test would be an additional tool to identify the low likelihood of amyloid pathology in symptomatic patients and determine whether they should proceed to further evaluation and testing that may confirm a diagnosis.

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“We are excited to be collaborating with Lilly on such an important area of unmet medical need,” CEO of Roche Diagnostics, Matt Sause, said.

"Collaboration is essential to ensure these people receive a timely and accurate diagnosis," he said, noting that over 55 million people presently live with dementia, which is expected to rise to over 140 million by 2050.

The top official further stated that the blood test has the potential to streamline a person's journey to diagnosis and, therefore, access to future treatment options.

“We are pleased to be joining Roche to support the development of yet another potential diagnostic tool,” Mark Mintun, the Lilly group vice president for Neuroscience R&D and president of Avid Radiopharmaceuticals, said.

“We look forward to the robust data and continued collaboration across the field that will be critical to accelerate the ecosystem to aid in a timely and accurate diagnosis of AD,” he added.

It should be noted that Roche announced in July 2022 that the US Food and Drug Administration had awarded the EAPP Breakthrough Device Designation.

The company further received in December 2022, premarket clearance from FDA under 510(k) clause for Elecsys beta-Amyloid (1-42) CSF II (Abeta42) and Elecsys Phospho-Tau (181P) CSF (pTau181) assays, which identify AD pathology in its early stages.

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