Equity investment will help advance MDDScore into commercialization.

Ridge Diagnostics entered into an exclusive agreement with Ameritox for the license rights to its MDDScore blood test for depression. Ameritox has agreed to make an equity investment in Ridge and commit to a next-stage clinical development program.

The MDDScore test developed by Ridge Diagnostics measures 10 biomarker levels associated with factors such as inflammation, development and maintenance of neurons, and interaction between brain structures involved with stress response and other key biological functions. Measurements are analyzed to produce an MDDScore that may help physicians determine whether a patient has major depressive disorder (MDD). The test is also being developed to assist in the selection of treatment.

“Ameritox investment in Ridge will likely accelerate the MDDScore test development and advance access to millions of patients already under the care of primary-care and pain-management physicians,” said Lonna J. Williams, CEO of Ridge Diagnostics.

A recent study with 70 adults who had been diagnosed with major depression evaluated in a pilot and replication study using the MDDScore appears in Molecular Psychiatry in February. The paper indicates the test diagnosed major depression with a high degree of accuracy within the study population.

Ridge Diagnostics provides testing services through its CLIA lab. The firm is developing additional tests for antidepressant response prediction and monitoring, adolescent depression, and companion diagnostics.

Its pipeline of neurodiagnostic blood tests are based on its Human Biomarker Library and Hyper-Mapping™ technology. The platform incorporates multiple markers from distinct human biological pathways. These biological markers are mapped onto a multidimensional hyperspace model to create the hyperspace vectors that construct and define the patterns that indicate major depressive disorder. A consistent change in these patterns is also used to evaluate the efficacy of antidepressant therapy.

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