Roche and Foundation Medicine’s New Blood Test Method Can Help Customize Cancer Immunotherapy

Roche and Foundation Medicine’s new blood test method can help customize cancer immunotherapy

Roche- a multinational healthcare company based in Switzerland together with Foundation Medicine recently invented a new blood test method that can precisely measure the amount of mutations within a cancer tumor. This test can potentially help in predicting which patients will be able to respond proficiently to some types of immunotherapies. The outcome of the test was revealed on September 8, 2017. Initial data derived from the test conducted by Roche that focused on determining the mutational burden of the TMB or tumor was disclosed on Friday- 8th September, at ESMO (the European Society for Medical Oncology) in Madrid. Immunotherapies like Opdivo by Bristol-Myers Squibb and Keytruda by Roche’s Tecentriq have enabled people to freshly hope for the best and combat deadly cancers. However, these immunotherapies work only in a small number of patients.

Immunotherapies such as Roche’s Tecentriq, Merck’s Keytruda and Bristol-Myers Squibb’s Opdivo have offered fresh hope to people with deadly cancers, but they only work in a fraction of patients suffering from cancer. Given the fact that the immunotherapies are extremely costly and have some serious side effects, and with many British regulators dubbing Tecentriq as highly expensive, doctors are looking for advanced ways to recognize which patients will be able to benefit the most with the help of such treatments and tests. According to certain evidences, the cancer tumor having more mutations is easily able to respond to immunotherapy, the company mentioned.

Roche also added that it is hoping that the new test will help them to improve measuring of TMB, especially at the time when invasive biopsies are not recommended and feasible. Roche says that there no such blood tests are introduced to the market till date. Chief medical officer of Roche, Sandra Horning mentioned that, “Biomarkers are not only going to enhance our understanding of immune biology but are also going to eventually help match our combinations and therapies for the patients most likely to get treated and benefited with the therapy.”

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