AMSTERDAM, Netherlands, Oct. 29, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- thromboDx, a molecular diagnostic company based in Amsterdam, The Netherlands announced that a 283 subject study shows that its' blood platelet based diagnostic platform enables accurate detection, classification and subtyping of cancer in the equivalent of one drop of blood. The study was published today in Cancer Cell and suggests that blood platelets can be used as an all-in-one, easily accessible, blood-based biosource that can deliver superior results over other technologies in clinical diagnostics and therapy selection applications.
The published study evaluates, in a large patient cohort, the diagnostic potential of next generation sequencing of mRNA's from blood platelets. By comparing mRNA profiles in platelet samples from 55 healthy individuals with those of 228 cancer patients with localized and metastasized tumors across six different tumor types the researchers at the VU University Medical Center were able to detect cancer with 96% accuracy. Of the 39 early stage cancer patients with localized tumors that were included in this study 100% were classified correctly.
In a follow on analysis using the same technology the team was able to identify the origin of the tumor in the patients that tested positively in case of lung, breast, brain, colon, pancreas and liver cancer with unprecedented accuracy for a blood based method. Further analysis of platelet mRNA profiles allowed stratification in clinically relevant subgroups exhibiting molecular differences in KRAS, EGFR, MET and other genes that can guide therapy selection.
"Early detection is essential to improving cancer survival" says Prof. Dr. Ralph Weissleder, Professor of Radiology, Harvard Medical School and Director of the Centers for Molecular Imaging Research and Systems Biology at the Massachusetts General Hospital, "looking at blood platelets to detect cancer is completely new and a promising technology to improve early detection. Further studies in high risk groups and general populations are now needed to validate the finding".
Prof. Dr. Tracy Batchelor, Professor of Neurology, Harvard Medical School, Co-Leader, Brain Cancer Program, Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center and Director of the Division of Neuro-Oncology at the Massachusetts General Hospital commented:
"For difficult to biopsy brain tumors, this could represent a method to obtain more information for prognostic and treatment purposes. This technology also offers the opportunity to serially assess molecular features of the tumor to determine whether conventional or experimental agents are having a beneficial impact on the cancer"
Results were published today in the journal Cancer Cell by VU University Medical Center together with the Umea University and Massachusetts General Hospital. Amsterdam based thromboDx is further developing diagnostic tests based on this technology.
thromboDx BV is a molecular diagnostics company that develops and commercializes blood-based diagnostics through its proprietary platelet-powered technology platform . The technology platform addresses the need for an easily accessible, minimally invasive source for high quality disease-specific nucleic acid biomarkers in several markets.
thromboDx BV has its offices in Amsterdam, The Netherlands and is embedded in an excellent scientific and clinical infrastructure at the Cancer Center Amsterdam that allows rapid access to patient cohorts and clinical studies. Collaborations have been established with several research groups at Cancer Center Amsterdam, the University of Umea in Sweden and with Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston.
contact: Rolf Jan Rutten +31646767255
Press release (PDF): http://hugin.info/171500/R/1962150/715575.pdf