The test will allow the detection of cell-free fetal DNA as an important early marker.

The KMU Innovation Program of the Federal Ministry for Research and Education will be supporting the project with EUR500,000 grants over the next two years.

LifeCodexx chairman and GATC Biotech CEO Peter Pohl said they will immediately investigate the new PacBio RS technology for use in the test protocol.

"This sequencing system of the Third Generation can analyze single molecules in real-time within minutes. Costs and duration of the diagnostic test could be drastically reduced," Pohl said.

LifeCodexx CEO Michael Lutz said they are pleased to have a second diagnostic test in their development pipeline, in addition to the non-invasive prenatal diagnostic test for the determination of trisomy 21.