Sequenom Builds Lab to Screen Test Results

Xconomy San Diego — 

A new 7,000-square-foot genetic testing laboratory is under construction at Sequenom’s San Diego headquarters. The San Diego Union-Tribune says today the new lab will open later this year, as the company begins to process samples in its “start-over” clinical trial intended to demonstrate the accuracy of its non-invasive test for Down syndrome. Sequenom (NASDAQ: SQNM) had to toss test results it had collected before April 2009, when the company scrubbed the launch of its test for Trisomy 21, the scientific name for Down syndrome, due to “mishandled data.” The clinical trial is being led by researchers at Women and Infants Hospital in Providence, RI, which is affiliated with Brown University. Sequenom hopes to introduce the Down syndrome screening test by late 2011. The test is sensitive enough to identify fetal DNA circulating in the pregnant mom’s blood.