HOUSTON, Nov. 14, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Precision for Medicine and TRACON Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: TCON) announced today the presentation of biomarker results from the TAPPAS phase 3 clinical trial that utilized ApoCell's proprietary circulating tumor cell (CTC) enrichment system, ApoStream. The study, titled Detection of Endoglin-Expressing CTCs in Patients Enrolled in an Adaptive Enrichment Phase 3 Trial of TRC105 and Pazopanib Versus Pazopanib Alone in Patients with Advanced Angiosarcoma (TAPPAS), is the first of its kind to show the detection and capture of CTCs from angiosarcoma cancer patients. Interim study results were presented at the Connective Tissue Oncology Society (CTOS) annual meeting in Rome, Italy.
Circulating tumor cells (CTCs) have long been known to exist in cancer patients' blood, and correlation has been established between the number of CTCs and disease progression. However, the promise of clinical application of CTCs has not been realized because these cells are very rare and difficult to detect and analyze using current molecular biology techniques. ApoCell, recently acquired by Precision for Medicine, employs a low-level electrical field of varying frequencies to enable the separation of cancer cells in blood. Known as ApoStream, the technology has been shown to detect and select significant quantities of circulating cancer cells, including rare cell types that have previously gone undetected, from small quantities of blood.
The ApoStream technology is currently being used to evaluate the pharmacodynamic effects of TRC105 on CTCs in the TAPPAS trial. "This new technology has promising implications in the advancement of cancer treatment and may serve two purposes in this trial. Baseline and on-study changes in endoglin-positive CTC counts will be correlated with efficacy endpoints to assess their usefulness as predictive or prognostic biomarkers," said Charles Theuer, MD, PhD, president and CEO of TRACON.
ApoStream, a "liquid biopsy" technology, is one of the first rare-cell capture platforms to enable the investigation of the effects of drugs in development using CTCs obtained from peripheral blood. "The ability to detect angiosarcoma CTCs is a tremendous benefit for patient care given the challenges and risks of obtaining tumor biopsies," said Darren Davis, PhD, senior vice president of Precision for Medicine. "We are very excited and committed to continuing the support of the TAPPAS study using the ApoStream technology to identify which patients may benefit from TRC105 therapy."
Going forward, it is expected that ApoStream will play a transformational role in the development of targeted therapies for the prevention and treatment of cancer, and enable oncologists to better implement advances derived from personalized medicine.
About Precision for Medicine
Precision for Medicine supports life sciences companies in the use of biomarkers essential to targeting patient treatments more precisely and effectively. Precision applies novel biomarker approaches to clinical research that take advantage of the latest advancements in science and technology, focusing predominantly on genomics, immune-response assays, global specimen logistics, biomarker analytics, companion diagnostics, and clinical trial execution. Precision for Medicine is part of Precision Medicine Group, with more than 1,450 employees in 30 locations in the US, Canada, and Europe. For more information, visit precisionformedicine.com.
ApoStream is a proprietary rare cell capture technology that was developed in collaboration with the National Cancer Institute. ApoStream enables the ability to capture CTCs and other rare cells from low volume samples, including peripheral blood, for the discovery and analysis of biomarkers. Utilizing innovative liquid biopsy biomarker technologies including the ApoStream technology tool, Precision for Medicine facilitates a deeper understanding of the pharmacodynamics of a drug candidate, enabling go/no-go decisions to be made earlier than ever before. More information can be found at ApoCell.com and ApoStream.com.
Louis Landon, Precision Medicine Group Media Relations
SOURCE Precision for Medicine