SAN DIEGO, May 4, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Biocept, Inc. (Nasdaq:BIOC), a molecular oncology diagnostics company specializing in biomarker analysis of circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) and circulating tumor cells (CTCs), today announced the launch of its c-MET amplification detection test utilizing a blood-based "liquid biopsy." This diagnostic assay has the potential to help physicians identify which patients may be receptive to certain gastric and non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) treatments.
The c-MET signaling pathway has shown to be dysfunctional in a wide variety of cancers. When this is the case, c-MET stimulates cell growth, invasion and metastasis – encouraging cells to resist timely death. Given the role of the c-MET pathway in the proliferation of cancer cells, it is a target for many cancer therapies currently in development.
Preliminary results from a study led by researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital and presented at the 2015 Gastrointestinal Cancers Symposium (GICS) showed that a novel small-molecule c-MET inhibitor showed promise in the treatment of c-MET-amplified GI cancers. In addition to targeting this mechanism in GI cancers, c-MET abnormalities (along with T790M mutations) are recognized as common mechanisms of acquired resistance to epidermal growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitors (EGFR TKIs) in advanced NSCLC. Biocept launched an assay to detect the presence of T790M mutation in NSCLC patients in January 2015.
"It has been demonstrated that high levels of c-MET correlate with poor prognosis in several tumor types, including breast, ovarian, gastric and lung cancer among others," said Veena Singh, M.D., SVP and Senior Medical Director of Biocept. "Now the excitement around c-MET is focused on its potential as a biomarker that will be a companion diagnostic for targeted therapies in gastric and lung cancers."
"The launch of our c-MET assay is consistent with our efforts to dedicate Biocept to transforming the field of personalized medicine," said Raaj Trivedi, VP of Commercial Operations for Biocept. "As new targets like c-MET grow in their potential as companion diagnostics, obtaining tissue samples to detect the mutation will be challenging for cancers like lung and gastric. Biocept's blood-based approach to oncology diagnostics avoids patient re-biopsy, allowing for molecular profiling and monitoring of patients with alterations in this key pathway throughout the course of therapy."
Biocept, Inc., headquartered in San Diego, Calif., 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 DNA, both in CTCs and in plasma (ctDNA). A standard blood sample is utilized to provide physicians with important prognostic and predictive information to enhance individual treatment of their patients with cancer. Biocept currently offers its OncoCEE-GA™ test for gastric cancer, OncoCEE-BR™ test for breast cancer and OncoCEE-LU™ test for non-small cell lung cancer and plans to introduce CLIA validated tests for colorectal, prostate and other solid tumors based on its proprietary technology platforms over the coming months.
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