Epic Sciences, a developer of diagnostic tests, has received a Phase II small business innovation research (SBIR) contract from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for the development of a lung cancer diagnostic blood test.

Under the Phase II grant, entitled ‘Circulating Tumor Cell Enumeration Product’, Epic will finalize the diagnostic test and validate it clinically in suspected lung cancer patients with circulating tumor cells (CTCs).

Epic Sciences president and CEO David Nelson said, "The highly competitive SBIR program funded by federal research dollars is essential for translating innovative technologies into products that can improve the health, well-being and security of the nation."

In addition to the Phase II grant, the company received a Phase I grant to develop a clinically useful method for identifying and characterizing CTCs.

The company said it has received total of $1.2m under phase I and II grants.