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Biocept's Patented Platform Identifies Clinically HER2-Negative Patients With HER2-Positive Circulating Tumor Cells

SAN DIEGO, Dec. 17, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Biocept, Inc. (Nasdaq:BIOC), a molecular oncology diagnostics company specializing in biomarker analysis of circulating tumor cells (CTCs) and circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA), today announced the presentation of a poster at the 2014 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium. The presentation highlights Biocept's ability to identify patients who have developed HER2-positive CTCs during disease progression after an initial HER2-negative diagnosis by solid biopsy. The discovery of these patients, who may potentially be candidates for anti-HER2 treatment is made possible by OncoCEE-BR™, a breast cancer diagnostic developed using Biocept's CTC capture and analysis technology. The study was conducted at the Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center.

Women traditionally undergo tumor biopsies of their primary breast cancer at the time of initial diagnosis, the results of which are typically used to dictate care. Biomarkers associated with a patient's breast cancer can evolve over time, however, altering the optimal course of treatment.

One of the key markers associated with breast cancer is HER2. Because of the benefits of HER2-directed therapy, it is critical to identify patients whose tumors have acquired HER2 overexpression during progression to ensure that these women receive an appropriate targeted drug regimen. For this purpose, information derived from CTCs present in a simple blood draw may identify women whose biomarker status has changed relative to HER2. This change in the tumor's genetic makeup makes these women candidates for anti-HER2 therapy, such as Herceptin (trastuzumab).

Lyle Arnold, SVP and Chief Scientific Officer for Biocept said, "This data is consistent with information previously published and further validates our patented and proprietary testing and its use in monitoring breast cancer patients. Institutions like Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, MD Anderson Cancer Center and other leading research and treatment centers continue to demonstrate significant interest in our technologies. We look forward to continuing our work with these leading researchers."

The findings demonstrated that 22 percent of 311 patients, who were previously HER2 negative according to a solid tumor biopsy, were found, upon disease progression, to be HER2 positive by CTC analysis, making them potential candidates for anti-HER2 therapy as the cancer evolves.

Moreover, the unique multi-antibody CTC capture method used by Biocept identified a substantial subset of patients who would not likely be detected with commonly used CTC capture technologies. This added 10 percent (included in the 22 percent) to the number of women who were candidates for this highly specific targeted therapy.

To begin to evaluate the sensitivity of patients with HER2+ CTC to HER2-targeted therapy, patients identified by the Biocept HER2 CTC assay are being treated with Herceptin in a clinical trial that is being conducted at the Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center.

For more information about Biocept and liquid biopsy, please visit www.biocept.com.

About Biocept, Inc.

Biocept, Inc., headquartered in San Diego, California, is a commercial-stage oncology diagnostics company focused on providing information on patients' tumors to physicians using its proprietary technology platform to help improve individual patient treatment. Biocept has developed proprietary technology platforms for capture and analysis of circulating tumor cells (CTCs) and circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) utilizing a standard blood sample to provide physicians with important prognostic and predictive information to enhance individual treatment of their patients with cancer. Biocept currently offers its OncoCEE-BR™ test for breast cancer and plans to introduce tests for lung, colorectal, prostate and other solid tumors based on its proprietary technology platforms.

CONTACT: Media Contact: The Ruth Group Melanie Sollid-Penton (646) 536-7023 msollid@theruthgroup.com

Source:Biocept, Inc.