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Austria-Graz: Research and experimental development services
Contract award notice
Results of the procurement procedure
Section I: Contracting authority
The applicable national procurement law is Austrian law.
Section II: Object
PCP to buy R&D services to develop Integrated and Standardized NGS Workflows for Personalised Therapy (Instand-NGS4P)
On Oct 20th 2021, a contract notice was published as part of the EU project Instand-NGS4P to purchase R&D services from a number of R&D providers in parallel (PCP procurement).
The PCP procurement compared competing alternative solution approaches to address the following challenge: development of two fully integrated, standardized NGS workflows, from sample-pre-analytics to medical decision making, for routine diagnostics of common and rare cancers in adults and children.
As the common challenge exists of a number of sub-challenges, the procurement is divided into the following lots, each corresponding to one sub-challenge:
— Lot 1: Pre-sequencing (Specimen collection, nucleic acid isolation, library preparation)
— Lot 2: Sequencing
— Lot 3: Bioinformatics analysis
— Lot 4: Integrated reporting
This is a joint procurement by different procurers across Europe that are all facing the same common challenge and are thus looking for similar solutions (so-called ‘buyers group’).
Testing is expected to be done at the premises of the contractors using test material provided by the procurers and at a minimum of 3 and a maximum of 7 procurer sites.
The procurement was announced in the form of a pre-commercial procurement (PCP) with a phased approach, i.e. a framework agreement covering 3 R&D phases:
• R&D up to solution design (Phase 1)
• R&D up to prototype (Phase 2)
• R&D up to original development and validation and testing of a limited set of first products or services (Phase 3).
After each phase, intermediate evaluations are carried out to progressively select the best competing solutions. The contractors with the best-value-for-money solutions will be offered a specific contract for the next phase. The phased approach with parallel contracts and intermediate evaluations will be followed within each lot. The result of phase 3 will be the development of 2 fully integrated NGS workflows with EQA.
For Phase 2, prototype validation is expected to be done at the premises of the contractors using test material provided by the Procurers. For Phase 3, the procurers (one or more) will carry out the testing and verification of the solutions at their premises and optionally at an additional medical center. This testing may also serve as a first customer test reference for the contractors.
The selected operators will retain ownership of the intellectual property rights (IPRs) that they generate during the PCP and will be able to use them to exploit the full market potential of the developed solutions i.e. beyond the procurement.
In order to implement NGS into routine diagnosis, a fully integrated workflow from patient sample collection to final diagnostic result report is required. This PCP will now focus on developing 3 independent lots, to be modularly integrated into two independent workflows, which could be e.g. target panel-based and/or whole genome / whole exome-based, for the diagnosis and treatment decision making (including pharmacogenomics) in common cancer entities and rare cancer entities.
In addition to introducing quality control (QC) steps for each critical part of the workflow and validating individual lots, the integrated performance of the whole workflow will be validated.
The performance improvement which this PCP aims to develop, compared to the current state-of-the art technology, is the integration of NGS data from tumor derived specimens (including liquid biopsy) with data from pharmacogenomic panels performed on non-tumor derived specimens.
Lot 1: Pre-Sequencing: a) Specimen collection, NA isolation b) Library preparation
Contracts are to be awarded for Lot 1 to a minimum of:
4 contractors for phase 1
3 contractors for phase 2
2 contractors for phase 3
Sufficient amount of good quality tenders were received to award the planned amount of contracts for Lot 1 (see section V for more information).
The abstracts of the winning tenders are available on www.instandngs4p.eu.
The PCP is expected to start on 16.04.2022 and end on 31.05.2025.
This procurement receives funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Programme, under grant agreement No 874719 — INSTAND-NGS4P (see www.instandngs4p.eu).The EU has given a grant for this procurement, but is not participating as a contracting authority in the procurement.
Additional information to II.2.5) Award criteria
Price is not the only criterion and all criteria are stated only in the procurement documents.
See the project website: www.instandngs4p.eu
Lot 2 of the PCP will not be started because an insufficient number of tenders was received (see section V for more information).
Contracts are to be awarded for Lot 3 to a minimum of:
Sufficient amount of good quality tenders were received to award the planned amount of contracts for Lot 3 (see section V for more information).
Contracts are to be awarded for Lot 4 to a minimum of:
Sufficient amount of good quality tenders were received to award the planned amount of contracts for Lot 4 (see section V for more information).
Section IV: Procedure
Section V: Award of contract
Integrated and standardized NGS workflows for Personalised therapy - Pre-sequencing
Integrated and standardized NGS workflows for Personalised therapy - Sequencing
Integrated and standardized NGS workflows for Personalised therapy - Bioinformatics Analysis
Section VI: Complementary information
This PCP procurement is exempted from the EU public procurement directives and the national laws that implement them.
Precise information on deadlines for review procedures:
The procurement is exempted from the EU public procurement directives (including the EU procurement remedies directives 89/665/EEC and 92/13/EEC — see above) and the national laws that implement them.
Publication of this notice in the Official Journal is not to be understood as a waiver of this exemption by the contracting authority.
The deadlines for the review procedures at the bodies for review and mediation, mentioned in IV.4.1) and IV.4.2) are: 10 days after formal notification of the decision