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Memorial Sloan Kettering Partners with Quest for Cancer Dx

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center has partnered with Quest Diagnostics to use molecular testing of patients' tumors to provide better treatment options and understand the genomic underpinnings of the disease.

In the first phase of the collaboration, Memorial Sloan Kettering will provide contextual information about the mutations identified in a next-generation sequencing-based test developed by Quest and will contribute to the clinical annotation report provided to physicians.

Quest's OncoVantage test is a next-generation sequencing-based laboratory-developed test that assesses the most commonly mutated exons in 34 genes related to solid tumors. The sequencing data will be shared with Memorial Sloan Kettering in de-identified form.

"This relationship will empower clinicians to improve their patients' health by identifying the best therapies for patients today and by identifying specific patients who may benefit from participation in clinical trials," Memorial Sloan Kettering President and CEO Craig Thompson said in a statement.

"By combining our broad market reach, which covers half the practicing physicians and hospitals in the United States, with MSK's deep experience in cancer care and molecular science, we hope to illuminate the best possible cancer treatment options for patients across the country," Quest President and CEO Steve Rusckowski added.

Quest and Memorial Sloan Kettering also plan to launch an expanded test involving hundreds of genes in 2015. The test will leverage knowledge amassed from Memorial Sloan Kettering's IMPACT (Integrated Mutation Profiling of Actionable Cancer Targets) test, which screens for mutations in more than 340 genes.

"Quest has demonstrated a commitment to evidence-based use of next-generation sequencing data in cancer," added Jose Baselga, Memorial Sloan Kettering's physician-in-chief. "This commitment to advancing molecular diagnostics in both a clinical and research context is central to our selection of Quest as a partner."