Kennedy Krieger Institute and Partek Incorporated Enter Third Year of NIH/SBIR Grant
Tuesday, June 30, 2015 - 13:09

Partnership delivers computational genomic analyses tools for autism spectrum disorder and mental health disorders

ST. LOUIS — 6/30/15 — Partek Incorporated in collaboration with the Kennedy Krieger Institute move into the third year of a $1.8M National Institutes of Health (NIH) SBIR grant aimed at developing commercial software to analyze human genetic changes that illuminate chromosomal abnormalities underlying conditions such as autism spectrum disorder (ASD), bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia.

During the first year of the grant the collaboration successfully developed a novel mathematical method that combines two commonly used genotype association approaches that reveal the opaque genetic distinction between individuals. The study progressed in the second year of the grant to evaluate the genetic information of entire families of ASD affected individuals resulting in the development of analysis tools that can identify chromosomal abnormalities during infancy.

During year three of the study, Partek will incorporate these new tools into its web-based analysis software, Partek® Flow®.

  • K-coef - calculates relatedness between any two individuals
  • SeqDuo - identifies inheritance patterns of a child from a single biological parent
  • SeqTrio - identifies inheritance patterns of a child from both biological parents 

“We’re excited to put these new algorithms into the hands of genetic researchers.” said Tom Downey, Principal Investigator and President of Partek Incorporated. “We anticipate that they will be useful in combination with other technologies to identify genetic variations that will lead to earlier diagnosis of mental and other inherited disorders.”
About Kennedy Krieger Institute
Internationally recognized for improving the lives of children and adolescents with disorders and injuries of the brain, spinal cord, and musculoskeletal system, the Kennedy Krieger Institute in Baltimore, MD serves more than 20,000 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 Kennedy Krieger Institute, visit