Icoria, the biotech firm formerly known as Paradigm Genetics, has secured a new partner for an existing federal grant program.

Icoria said Thursday that it will work with Agilent Tecnhologies, a California-based firm, on an $11.7 grant project. Agilent replaces Lion bioscience AG, which dropped out of the project, Icoria said.

The grant is from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Advanced Technology Program (ATP) and dates to 2002. The grant is to develop a Target Assessment Technologies Suite for the “improved discovery and validation of targets for product development in the pharmaceutical and life sciences,” Icoria said in a statement.

Agilent has an informatics program for handling genomic, proteomic, toxicologic, and drug efficacy data.

Icoria said it has completed the first technical milestone objective for the grant – development, validation, and analysis of a coherent data set, the first of three to be developed under the grant. The data came through Icoria’s investigation of liver injury in rats induced by acetaminophen, a common pain reliever. The study also involved the discovery of biomarkers indicative of liver toxicity.

Icoria: www.icoria.com