Health Innovation Manchester and global partner QIAGEN has announced the creation of a new company to develop new tests for the prediction, prevention, and diagnosis of disease.

The partners launched a business called ‘APIS Assay Technologies’, which will be dedicated to developing novel techniques – biomarkers - for diagnosing disease and pinpointing the treatments which are right for each individual patient.

The initiative is the brainchild of global biotech company QIAGEN, which has already announced a major expansion of its Manchester R&D hub, and Health Innovation Manchester.

The aim of APIS is to help to realise the clinical and commercial potential of genomic medicine in diagnostic tests and personalisation of treatment, and in the prediction and prevention of disease.

It already has three tests in development, including for prognostic breast cancer diagnostics. They plan to use insights gained in oncology to expand its diagnostics services to other disease areas such as liver and lung diseases, pharmacogenomics and non-invasive reproductive diagnostics, using advanced technology. The company is actively in talks with a number of pharmaceutical and diagnostic companies about establishing partnerships.

Rowena Burns, chair of health innovation Manchester, said: “Greater Manchester’s vision is to create a globally-leading precision health campus for innovation, translational science and molecular diagnostics, employing up to 1,500 highly skilled people.  Our partnership with QIAGEN underlines their role as the UK’s flagship industry partner and acts as a catalyst for Manchester to become a major hub for genomic research and industry in Europe.

“This is a major development for life sciences here – and across the North – and a testament to our long-standing history of forming public-private partnerships to support the creation of jobs, growth, address the health needs of local people, while also making an important international contribution to improved diagnosis and treatment of disease.”

The company will be located on the main Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust campus alongside the Manchester Centre for Genomic Medicine.