Chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) is a type of blood cancer characterized by an excessive production of granulocytes (a type of white blood cell) by the bone marrow.

The diagnostic and therapeutic management (closely linked) of CML has been revolutionized in the past decade. Indeed, the molecular understanding of the disease and the availability of targeted therapies called TKIs (tyrosine kinase inhibitors), which act on the molecular dysfunction specific to this leukemia, have completely changed the outcome for patients.

We have thus moved from a deadly disease to one that can be treated and completely controlled for patients who receive the appropriate treatment and tolerate it well.

To benefit from the appropriate treatment, however, the patient must have access to a reliable diagnostic tool that will highlight a product resulting from the characteristic mutation of this disease: the BCR-ABL fusion gene, which is systematically sought in any suspicion of CML.

Recently, the French National Authority for Health (HAS) recommended the search for the BCR-ABL fusion transcript by RT-PCR for the initial diagnosis of CML and the quantification of this transcript by RT-QPCR, every three months, for the follow-up of patients treated with TKIs.

RT-PCR analysis is performed on a blood sample. It is the most sensitive technique for the detection of the BCR-ABL gene; it is capable of detecting a leukemic cell among more than 100,000 normal cells.

For TKIs, an increasing number of generics are available on the Moroccan market, making treatment more accessible. However, much remains to be done regarding the PCR test, the price of which is exorbitant and according to patient associations is not always covered or not covered regularly, which constitutes a heavy burden for patients, especially those with low incomes.

It is in this context that Moldiag, a spin-off of the MAScIR Foundation, affiliated with UM6P, will launch on the market this Friday, March 31, 2023, the first 100% Moroccan BCR-ABL kit at a controlled cost: a qualitative and quantitative multiplex in vitro amplification for the detection and quantification of nucleic acids of the mRNA of the BCR-ABL fusion gene and the ABL reference gene.

This test has successfully passed all the necessary steps to obtain marketing authorization issued by our Ministry of Health and to obtain CE marking attesting to its compliance with the strictest requirements in Europe.

It should also be noted that through the production of this test, whose price will be adapted to the human challenges posed by this disease that affects more than 2,400 people, of which only 640 are diagnosed, Moldiag aims to contribute to the health security of the Kingdom. This action thus fully fits into the national strategy for the generalization of medical coverage, national strategies for the manufacture of health products and technologies, and continental strategies for public health.


About MAScIR Foundation:

The MAScIR Foundation is a non-profit association affiliated with the Mohammed VI Polytechnic University. Established in 2007, its aim is to promote and develop technological research hubs in the fields of materials and nanomaterials, biotechnology, microelectronics, and life sciences. Its work is focused on applied research and innovation to meet market needs.


About Moldiag:

Moldiag is a medical biotechnology startup spun off from the MAScIR Foundation, specializing in the production and commercialization of medical diagnostic kits. It actively and successfully contributed to the sovereignty of the Kingdom of Morocco during the recent Covid-19 health crisis.


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