Aptamer and Tinser team up on cervical cancer test

York-based Aptamer Group plc said it has signed an agreement with Timser Group, a pharmaceutical company focused on women’s health, to develop a new, more effective test for cervical cancer.

Under the terms of the agreement, worth up to £465,000, Aptamer said it will develop binders that work with Timser’s biomarker panel, creating the world’s first blood test for cervical cancer, which should provide earlier diagnosis at the pre-cancerous stage, while avoiding invasive smear tests.

Cervical cancer is the fourth most common cancer type in women worldwide. Present screening methods rely on invasive and relatively low sensitivity PAP smear tests.

Dr Arron Tolley, Chief Technical Officer of Aptamer Group, said: “We believe that implementing Optimer technology will allow our partners to overcome previous issues experienced with antibody variability and supply chains, and we look forward to delivering much-needed improvements to cervical cancer tests.”