From mind to mouth – Clever research concepts finally bring new player to companion diagnostics market
The recent admission of Olaparib treatment by FDA and EMA caused quite a stir in cancer therapeutics and for good reasons: Patients of ovarial carcinoma and related carcinomas now have a perspective of personalized and improved treatment while at the same time the authorities’ decision underlines the growing acceptance of companion diagnostics (CDx) based therapies. With this April newsletter we invite you to take a look at how ideas emerging from biomarker research can successfully result in CDx market access and how IMGM’ services can support you on this way.
When obvious targets have been hit it is difficult to come up with something new and impossible without accurately knowing the adversary. Knowledge from biomarker research identified such a new target in cancer cells and enabled the introduction of a whole new compound class, the PARP-inhibitors. The PARP enzyme repairs DNA strand breaks occurring during replication and can be substituted by BRCA1/2 in some contexts. If both repair mechanisms are abolished (due to mutation of the genes and/or inhibition of their activity) cells undergo apoptosis. In cells with two aberrant alleles of BRCA1/2 therefore PARP1 inhibition by Olaparib can selectively induce apoptosis (programmed cell death) in cancer cells and lead to significantly higher survival rates. This is where companion diagnostics and pharmacogenetics come into play. Patients of ovarial carcinoma and related carcinomas are first diagnosed for the mutational status of BRCA1/2 to predict if Olaparib administration can exert the desired effect.
In the satisfying case of Olaparib, the weak point of the tumor class was revealed by next generation sequencing in combination with functional cancer genomics. This gives hope for the many disease cases where the knowledge of crucial factors and correspondent therapeutic approaches for personalized treatment still has to be generated by intensive research. As the leading example of Olaparib shows, all the research effort is worth to be invested to provide the patients with improved and more precise therapies in the future.
IMGM is looking forward to support your research for companion diagnostics and identification of genetic factors with its expertise in biomarker research and pharmacogenetics and its advanced methods in NGS, microarray and qPCR.
Get in touch with our team via our contact sheet or call +49.89.4524667.0. For more information on IMGM’s service portfolio check out our homepage www.IMGM.com
The IMGM Team
The Human Microbiome
EMBL Heidelberg, Germany
June 10-12, 2015
Jahrestagung der Sektion Molekulare Diagnostik (DGKL)