Kennedy Krieger Institute and Partek Incorporated Awarded $1.8M NIH Grant

May 22, 2013
Research partnership aimed at developing computational tools to analyze genomic data from patients with autism spectrum disorder and mental health disorders

St. Louis, MO--Partek Incorporated is pleased to announce that in collaboration with the Kennedy Krieger Institute it has been awarded $1.8M by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to develop commercial software to analyze human genetic changes that will illuminate chromosomal abnormalities that underlie conditions such as autism spectrum disorder (ASD), bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia. 

Previously Partek and Kennedy Krieger collaborated to develop a novel mathematical method that combined two commonly used genotype association approaches to reveal the opaque genetic distinction between individuals. While that study focused on estimating the relatedness between populations, this study will leverage that research and narrow its focus to families with one or more members affected by ASD. This will facilitate the development of analysis tools to identify chromosomal abnormalities with the goal of identifying individuals with ASD during infancy. Earlier diagnosis will allow treatment to be started sooner when it can best improve life-long cognitive and social skills. These same analysis tools will be able to be used in the early diagnosis of mental health conditions including bipolar disorder and schizophrenia––potentially enabling early treatment.

“One in every 88 children is diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder and one in every four adults suffer from a diagnosable mental health disorder. We are excited to be working with researchers at Kennedy Krieger Institute to build tools that are innovative, rigorous, and useful to the biomedical research community.” said Tom Downey, Principal Investigator and President of Partek Incorporated.

About Partek Incorporated

Partek Incorporated (www.partek.com) develops and globally markets quality analysis software for life sciences research and provides innovative solutions for integrated genomics. Partek software is unique in supporting all major microarray and next-generation sequencing platforms. Workflows offer streamlined analysis for: Gene Expression, miRNA Expression, Exon, Copy Number, Allele-Specific Copy Number, LOH, Association, Trio analysis, Tiling, ChIP-Seq, RNA-Seq, DNA-Seq, DNA Methylation and qPCR. Since 1993, Partek, headquartered in St. Louis, MO, USA, has been turning data into discovery®.

About Kennedy Krieger Institute

Internationally recognized for improving the lives of children and adolescents with disorders and injuries of the brain and spinal cord, the Kennedy Krieger Institute in Baltimore, MD, serves more than 19,000 individuals each year through inpatient and outpatient clinics, home and community services and school-based programs. Kennedy Krieger provides a wide range of services for children with developmental concerns mild to severe, and is home to a team of investigators who are contributing to the understanding of how disorders develop while pioneering new interventions and earlier diagnosis. For more information on the Kennedy Krieger Institute, visit www.kennedykrieger.org.

Media Contacts:;

Kennedy Krieger Institute
Elise Welker
443-923-7330
media@kennedykrieger.org                              

Partek, Inc. - USA
Kathi Gosche
314-878-2329 x17
kgosche@partek.com