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Personalis, BC Cancer Partner on Study of ctDNA MRD Tests for Colorectal, Pancreatic Cancers

NEW YORK – Personalis said Monday that it has partnered with BC Cancer to study its NeXT Personal molecular residual disease assay in patients with colorectal and pancreatic cancers, aiming to recruit approximately 220 patients from across British Columbia.

The company hopes to determine certain parameters for the tumor-informed liquid biopsy assay such as the best time to draw blood for ctDNA sampling, as well as to study how ctDNA MRD testing may be useful in identifying cancer progression before current standard-of-care tests.

Personalis will also work with BC Cancer to assess whether MRD testing in these patients has the potential to reduce healthcare spending compared to existing imaging tools.

"CtDNA surveillance may allow earlier detection of cancer recurrence or progression, and therefore earlier intervention, which may improve patient survival," BC Cancer Medical Oncologist Jonathan Loree said in a statement.

"We believe the clinical management of cancer can substantially improve with early determination of patient response and by accurately informing changes to treatment regimens. Such determinations offer the potential to avoid unnecessary toxicities, improve cost-effectiveness, and increase survival," added Richard Chen, Personalis' chief medical officer.

Further terms of the collaboration were not disclosed.