Biocept launches blood-based liquid biopsy testing for NSCLC indications

Nov. 17, 2014

Biocept, Inc., a molecular oncology diagnostics company specializing in biomarker analysis of circulating tumor DNA and circulating tumor cells (CTCs), has announced the launch of its lung cancer liquid biopsy testing, which will be performed at Biocept’s CLIA-certified and CAP-accredited laboratory.

By launching blood-based biomarker testing for non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), along with the previously commercialized breast cancer offering, Biocept is providing options for healthcare providers when a tumor biopsy is not available or is unsafe to perform or when additional information is desired. For patients with recurrent or newly diagnosed metastatic lung cancer, accurate identification of genomic biomarker information is a key piece of information needed for making treatment decisions. A challenge for physicians has been availability of tissue from the surgical biopsy that is required to perform the biomarker testing. This limitation occurs as a result of tumor location or patient health.

According to a recent study, when lung biopsies are attempted, there is a 19.3% risk of complications such as a collapsed lung or an infection. Managing these complications quadruples the cost of care. In comparison, the cost of a simple blood draw is nominal and poses little risk for patients.

Biocept’s first CLIA-validated assay for lung cancer will be testing for ALK fusions on CTCs captured in the company’s patented device. ALK is incorporated into the testing guidelines utilized by oncologists when making treatment decisions in NSCLC patients. ALK-positive patients now have targeted treatment options with two key drugs that have been approved by the FDA—Pfizer’s Xalkori (crizotinib) and Novartis’s Zykadia (ceritinib). Others are in development. Biocept plans to offer additional biomarkers for lung cancer that physicians use when making treatment decisions before the end of the year and during 2015, including EGFR mutations, Ros1 fusions, KRAS mutations, and EGFR and MET amplification. Learn more about Biocept.

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