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Life Tech, TGen, US Oncology Team on Sequencing Project for Guiding Cancer Treatment

By a GenomeWeb staff reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Life Technologies, the Translational Genomics Research Institute, and US Oncology announced today that they are collaborating on a sequencing study aimed at determining whether cancer genome sequencing can help guide individual treatments.

The study will focus on triple negative breast cancer — an aggressive form of cancer representing as many as 20 percent of breast cancer cases. These tumors often resist existing breast cancer therapies, leaving a paucity of effective treatment options.

In an effort to explore the clinical utility of genome sequencing, researchers from Life Technologies, US Oncology, and TGen's Cancer Genome and Oncology program plan to enroll 14 individuals with triple negative breast cancer and the matched tumor-normal genomes from these individuals using the Applied Biosystems SOLiD platform.

Researchers from TGen and Life Technologies also plan to work together to come up with new computational and informatics software that can be used to help find and interpret mutations in the genome and apply this information therapeutically.

Caris Life Sciences, a CLIA-certified testing company, will validate mutations identified in the sequencing stage of the project before this genomic information is applied.

The team then hopes to be able to tailor patient treatments by taking into account pathways involved in each individual's cancer.

"Current clinical trials are aimed at showing how one new drug can be safe and effective across hundreds of people," Daniel Von Hoff, physician in chief and senior investigator at TGen, who is also CSO at US Oncology and Scottsdale Healthcare's Virginia G. Piper Cancer Center, said in a statement. "This study flips that concept by using sequencing data from one individual to evaluate which anti-cancer drugs could be most effective based on normal and tumor genetic makeup. This is truly the definition of genomic medicine."

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