SMA Foundation Announces Biomarker Panel for SMA

A new biomarker assay panel for spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) could predict disease progression.

According to the SMA Foundation, Myriad RBM's Multi-Analyte Profiling (MAP) technology platform evaluates the severity of the disease as well as progression and can assess drug efficacy and shorten the duration of clinical trials.

The Biomarkers for SMA (BforSMA) clinical study collected more than 120 plasma samples from patients with SMA. These samples were then processed using Myriad RBM's DiscoveryMAP 250+ biomarker discovery platform. From the analysis, candidate biomarkers were revealed, which were tested against more than 150 longitudinal samples from an SMA natural history study by the Pediatric Neuromuscular Clinical Research Network. A panel consisting of 27 validated biomarkers was selected. The new product is called SMA-MAP.

Measuring these biomarkers in SMA clinical trials could help researchers predict and monitor SMA progression and therapeutic efficacy.

"Myriad RBM has given us a tool that holds great promise," said Dr. Karen Chen, chief scientific officer and chief operating officer of the SMA Foundation. "We are now able to make biochemical measurements that will help us objectively assess functional changes in children and adults with SMA, and, hopefully, detect early signals of therapeutic success in new drug trials for this devastating disease."