SAN DIEGO, Aug. 25, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Sequenom, Inc. (NASDAQ: SQNM), a life sciences company committed to enabling healthier lives through the development of innovative products and services, today announced that it has entered into a clinical research collaboration with the University of California, San Diego Moores Cancer Center. Under this collaboration, Moores Cancer Center will explore the utility of Sequenom's new liquid biopsy assay to comprehensively profile circulating cell-free tumor DNA in blood to enable serial monitoring and assist with therapy selection in cancer patients. This technology has the potential to overcome the challenges and limitations associated with current methods such as imaging and invasive biopsies.
"Sequenom has designed a comprehensive multi-gene panel based on the clinical actionability of cancer genes. The ability to match patients to a growing list of treatments and to monitor their response by a simple blood draw promises to make a significant difference in the way we treat cancer patients at UC San Diego," said Razelle Kurzrock, M.D., chief of the Division of Hematology & Oncology and Murray Professor of Medicine, senior deputy director of Clinical Science and director of the Center for Personalized Cancer Therapy & Clinical Trials Office. "The collaboration with Sequenom will allow us to analyze more cancer-related genes in the blood than previously possible to better understand tumor heterogeneity and the emergence of resistance mutations."
Sequenom is currently developing a Research Use Only (RUO) assay with an initial focus on the detection and molecular profiling of late stage non-hematologic malignancies, where tissue biopsies are not available or too risky to obtain. The assay will cover a breadth of cancer types by analyzing over 100 cancer-related genes that are associated with a Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved drug treatment, included in professional society guidelines, linked to targeted therapies currently in clinical trials, or part of well-documented cancer pathways.
"We are very excited to work with Dr. Kurzrock and the UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center to evaluate our circulating tumor DNA profiling assay in clinical samples," said Daniel Grosu, M.D., Chief Medical Officer at Sequenom. "Our wholly owned subsidiary, Sequenom Laboratories, has tested over 450,000 plasma samples to date with our noninvasive prenatal tests, giving us significant experience and know-how in the study of circulating cell-free DNA. We are uniquely positioned to leverage this expertise and move liquid biopsy from a research concept to routine clinical practice in oncology."
The collaboration with UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center is the first of a series of collaborations with leading cancer centers worldwide that will utilize the assay as part of their clinical research programs. Sequenom, through its wholly owned subsidiary Sequenom Laboratories, intends to carry out further studies in order to bring to market a liquid biopsy assay for use in patient care in 2016.
About UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center and the Center for Personalized Cancer Therapy Established in 1978, Moores Cancer Center at UC San Diego Health is one of 45 National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers in the United States, and the only one in the San Diego region. Such centers are prominent among the leading institutions in the nation dedicated to scientific innovation and clinical excellence. This designation — reserved for centers with the highest achievements in cancer research, clinical care, education, and community contributions — makes an enormous difference to its patients.
The Center for Personalized Cancer Therapy is an important initiative of UC San Diego Health and Moores Cancer Center. The center, led by Razelle Kurzrock, M.D., works with patients with all types of cancer. As part of this initiative, oncologists at Moores Cancer Center can order molecular testing of a tumor's genetic profile and review a patient's medical information with Moores Cancer Center's Molecular Tumor Board, a multidisciplinary group of expert physicians and world-class scientists who meet regularly to discuss the best treatment for each patient. Based on genetic testing results, therapeutic options may include new treatment candidates being studied in clinical trials, as well as existing therapies that are widely available. Moores Cancer Center participates in more than 200 clinical trials for novel therapies. An important part of the Center's initiatives is the Liquid Biopsy program, directed by Dr. Kurzrock. This program pioneers examining DNA shed from tumors into the blood or other fluids, to evaluate responses, without an invasive tissue biopsy.
About Sequenom Sequenom, Inc. (NASDAQ: SQNM) is committed to enabling healthier lives through the development of innovative products and services. The Company serves patients and physicians by providing early patient management information. To learn how Sequenom is interpreting the genome to improve your life, visit www.sequenom.com.
About Sequenom Laboratories Sequenom Laboratories™, a CAP-accredited and CLIA-certified molecular diagnostics laboratory, has developed a broad range of laboratory-developed tests, with a focus principally on prenatal care. Branded under the names HerediT® CF, HerediT® UNIVERSAL, VisibiliT™, MaterniT21® PLUS, MaterniT™ GENOME, and NextView™, these molecular genetic laboratory-developed tests provide early patient management information for obstetricians, geneticists, genetic counselors and maternal fetal medicine specialists. Sequenom Laboratories is changing the landscape in genetic diagnostics using proprietary cutting-edge technologies. Visit www.laboratories.sequenom.com and follow @SequenomLabs.
SEQUENOM®, Sequenom Laboratories™, HerediT® CF, HerediT® UNIVERSAL, VisibiliT™, MaterniT21® PLUS, MaterniT™ GENOME, and NextView™, are trademarks of Sequenom, Inc. All other trademarks and service marks are the property of their respective owners.
Forward-Looking Statements contained in this press release regarding matters that are not historical facts are "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 including statements regarding the development of innovative products and services, the ability of the Company's technology to overcome the challenges and limitations associated with current cancer detection methods such as imaging and invasive biopsies, the ability to match patients to a growing list of treatments and to monitor their response by a simple blood draw, the ability to analyze more cancer-related genes in the blood than previously possible, the ability of the assay to cover a breadth of cancer types by analyzing over 100 cancer-related genes, the ability to leverage the Company's expertise and move liquid biopsy from a research concept to routine clinical practice in oncology, and the ability to bring to market a liquid biopsy assay for use in patient care in 2016. Because such statements are subject to risks and uncertainties, actual results may differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Risks are described more fully in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including without limitation the Company's most recent Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q and other documents subsequently filed with or furnished to the Securities and Exchange Commission. All forward-looking statements contained in this press release speak only as of the date on which they were made. The Company undertakes no obligation to update such statements to reflect events that occur or circumstances that exist after the date on which they were made.
SOURCE Sequenom, Inc.