Sigma-Aldrich is allying with King's College London on new research into miRNA (micro RNA) identification technology for use in clinical diagnostics.
The firm's Sigma Life Science division has agreed a licensing deal with the college to develop and commercialise new technology for isolating and validating miRNA targets, a process that is currently difficult and inefficient.
It will focus on a new innovation from King's that simplifies this step, allowing key gene regulation events to be elucidated in vivo.
Both Sigma-Aldrich and King's expect the development of this technology to offer benefits in oncology research, as many miRNAs function as oncogenes or tumour suppressor genes.
Steven Suchyta, market segment manager at Sigma-Aldrich, said: "We believe that the exclusive license agreement will allow Sigma Life Science and King's College London to work closely together to ensure rapid development of this technology for the benefit of the research community."
Last month, the company published its financial report for the first three months of 2011, during which it delivered a new record level of quarterly sales.