Success for cancer diagnostic company

An excellent week for Dunedin-based cancer diagnostic company Pacific Edge got even better last night when it won the supreme award at the New Zealand Innovators Awards in Auckland.

The Dunedin company had earlier enjoyed a big spike in its share price after it announced that it was signing up a key United States client, FedMed, a national health network servicing 40 million Americans. Pacific Edge chief executive David Darling, who had yesterday just flown back to New Zealand from the United States, said the outcome was ''fantastic'' for the firm -''it's been a great week for us''.

The firm won the top award with its innovative product Cxbladder, a novel gene test for the detection and management of bladder cancer.

The supreme award, which comes with a trophy and intellectual property advice valued at $5000, was ''tremendous recognition'' for the Dunedin team. It was rare for the same team of people to have gone from ''discovery science'' to successful product development, Mr Darling said.

Several members of the team had been in Auckland for the awards, but Prof Parry Guilford, the firm's chief scientific officer and a principal investigator at the University of Otago's Cancer Genetics Laboratory, had been unable to attend.

The firm's new gene test also won the Innovation in Health and Science award last night.

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