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December 14, 2016

Trovagene Axes 20 Staffers, Refocuses on Distributing Kits, Systems

  • Trovagene will eliminate 20 employees in a restructuring designed to focus the developer of circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) molecular diagnostics on distributing kits and systems for use by research institutions, cancer centers, and clinical service facilities.

    The company’s announcement, made yesterday, did not specify the percentage of workforce to be eliminated or furnish a pre-reduction workforce figure. Representatives of the company at deadline had not answered a GEN query on the extent of the reduction.

    The company appears to have grown this year from the 16 employees reported as of December 31, 2015, in its Form 10-K annual report for last year, filed March 10.

    The job cuts—plus elimination of expenses linked to marketing CLIA services directly to medical professionals—are projected to save Trovagene approximately $4 million per year in annual pre-tax expenses, the company said.

    “Our transition to marketing kits directly to these clinical research laboratories lowers our commercial costs and mitigates any sales conflicts with our laboratory customers,” Trovagene CEO Bill Welch said in a statement. “Numerous clinical research laboratories have expressed significant interest in utilizing our ctDNA technology to offer their own in-house liquid biopsy tests to clinicians and their patients.”

    Trovagene said its initial research-use-only proprietary kits will include a urine collection kit, a urine ctDNA extraction kit, and multigene mutation enrichment kits, along with the Boreal OnTarget™ mutation detection system.

    On November 30, Trovagene entered into a strategic long-term relationship with Boreal Genomics to co-develop urine and blood ctDNA assay kits for next-generation sequencing platforms. The partnership, which includes a supply and distribution agreement, allows Trovagene to globally distribute assay kits for use on the Boreal OnTarget™ system in blood and exclusively in urine.

    Trovagene said it will continue to operate its CLIA/CAP-certified laboratory to provide and grow its testing services to third-party U.S. and international clinical research labs, as well as for pharmaceutical drug development.

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