Haplogen Genomics: Horizon Discovery Group Signs Co-Exclusive Commercial Agreement

Adds high-throughput, low cost CRISPR/Cas9 human haploid cell line generation service and extensive human haploid knock-out cell lines catalog

Horizon Discovery Group plc (LSE:HZD) (Horizon), a leading provider of research tools to support translational genomics and the development of personalized medicines, today announced it has entered a worldwide co-exclusive distribution agreement with Haplogen Genomics GmbH (Haplogen).

The agreement provides Horizon with access to a new high-throughput, affordable cell line engineering service. Haplogen’s extensive experience with haploid cell lines, along with a highly optimized production pipeline, allows knockouts for any non-essential gene to be generated at a throughput of hundreds of new isogenic cell lines per month. This highly efficient operation for the first time puts custom and validated human isogenic cell line pairs in the reach of all basic and translational scientists engaged in genomics and drug discovery research and development.

Horizon will also market Haplogen’s rapidly growing collection of over 700 human knockout cell lines, the largest collection of human cell lines deficient for the expression of single genes available, and more than 9,000 thousand gene trap mutants to the over 70,000 active academic research labs worldwide. Biotech and Pharma customers can access off the shelf or custom cell-lines through Horizon by signing a limited use label license for a one year term, while academic customers can access an unlimited term license at >80% discount. Combined these products and services potentially represent a significant revenue stream for Horizon, subject to market takeup.

Haplogen’s human cell lines carry only a single copy of each of its chromosomes and have been comprehensively characterized at the genomic, transcriptional and functional level, making them ideal for the of study a great variety of biological processes, such as signal transduction, cellular trafficking, DNA repair, cell cycle or host-pathogen interactions.

Dr Darrin M Disley, CEO of Horizon Discovery Group plc, commented: “This agreement represents a major opportunity for Horizon as we can now address the needs of the majority of academic research labs who have not historically been able to access our custom gene-editing services, but who now will be able to at a price that mirrors that of a typical pre-engineered catalogue item.”

Dr. Disley continued, “Haplogen’s products and services are highly complementary to our in-house portfolio, including our X-MAN™ range of diploid isogenic cell lines. This exclusive relationship supports Horizon’s goal of providing high quality product, service and R&D programs to customers engaged both in basic research and at every stage of translational genomics and personalized medicine, from sequence to treatment.”

Dr Thomas Moser, CEO of Haplogen Genomics, said: “We have been pleased with the success of the initial non-exclusive agreement and are very happy to now extend the range of Haplogen products and services offered through Horizon on a co-exclusive basis. Horizon’s global reputation within the industry and its commercial reach are increasing, and this amended marketing and distribution agreement will increase the impact of our products on translational genomics research.”

About Horizon Discovery
Horizon is a revenue-generating life science company supplying research tools to organizations engaged in genomics research and the development of personalized medicines. Horizon has a diverse and international customer base approaching 1,000 organizations across nearly 50 countries, including major pharmaceutical, biotechnology and diagnostic companies as well as leading academic research centers. The Company supplies its products and services into multiple markets, estimated to total in excess of £29 billion by 2015.
Horizon’s core capabilities are built around its proprietary translational genomics platform, GENESIS™, a high-precision and flexible suite of gene editing tools able to alter almost any endogenous gene sequence of human or mammalian cell-lines. Horizon offers almost 2,200 products, almost all of which are based on the application of GENESIS™ to generate cell lines that accurately model the disease-causing mutations found in genetically based diseases. These ‘patients-in-a-test-tube’ are being used by customers to identify the effect of individual or compound genetic mutations on drug activity, patient responsiveness, and resistance, which may lead to the successful prediction of which patient sub-groups will respond to currently available and future drug treatments.
In addition, Horizon provides GENASSIST™ CRISPR and rAAV gene editing tools, custom cell line generation services for research and bioproduction applications, quantitative molecular reference standards, in vivo disease models, contract research and custom screening services, custom shRNA development services and off-the-shelf validated shRNA (through Horizon’s partner Sirion), and haploid cell lines (through Horizon’s partner Haplogen).  These latter partnerships provide Horizon with almost 11,000 further products for our customers.
Horizon is headquartered in Cambridge, UK, and is listed on the London Stock Exchange’s AIM market under the ticker “HZD”, for further information please visit: www.horizondiscovery.com.

About Haplogen Genomics
Haplogen Genomics is a privately held biotechnology company in Vienna, Austria. It provides the largest collection of validated human knock-out cell lines thereby empowering biomedical research.
Haplogen Genomics employs a powerful functional genomics platform based on haploid genetics in human cell lines. Haplogen Genomics is constructing next generation haploid genetics tools for internal target discovery programs and as part of its commitment to support experimental human genetics in the wider scientific community. In addition, Haplogen Genomics offers partnerships to perform haploid genetic screens for drug target discovery and to elucidate drug mechanism of action.

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