NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Strand Life Sciences is aiming to position its 152-gene cancer sequencing test for solid tumors as a tool that can be used early on in a patient's disease in order to inform first-line therapy.

The company launched a 48-gene version of the StrandAdvantage test in the US in April, but has since expanded it to 152 genes in order to boost the clinical utility to about 83 percent, from around 65 percent. The company plans to publish a validation study of its test in a peer-reviewed journal in the near future.

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360Dx reports that the US Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services would cover next-generation sequencing-based cancer panel tests.

The Washington Post reports that a meteorologist is being considered as presidential science and technology advisor.

Researchers have developed a PCR-based assay to gauge whether manatees are present in waters.

In PNAS this week: precision medicine strategy to screen for disease risk, genome evolution in Haemophilus influenzae, and more.