The gene expression blood tests are designed for the prognosis of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) patients who experience frequent exacerbations (lung attacks).

Under the agreement, HTG will develop the assay on its proprietary qNPA platform, while the PROOF Centre will be involved in the clinical validation in Canada and provide support for regulatory approval in North America.

PROOF Centre director Bruce McManus said, "This agreement with HTG Molecular Diagnostics will facilitate bringing these tests to market faster, providing physicians with tools to improve patient care and management and help alleviate suffering of patients with COPD."

HTG Molecular Diagnostics CEO TJ Johnson said pulmonology practitioners and patients need an early predictor which detects frequent patient lung attacks and provide personalize preventive care.

"This agreement is the first of many that HTG Molecular Diagnostics and PROOF Centre hope to have to bring medically valuable biomarker tests to the clinic," Johnson added.