Oncologists may know in advance whether standard therapy will have an effect on their patients or they have to resort to alternative therapies.
In Spain, colorectal cancer has an annual incidence of 25,000 cases, of which about 56%-around 14,000 cases -ends in death. This is largely due to the fact that standard therapy may not be effective in 40% of those patients, because of the presence of specific somatic mutations which prevent correct operation of the drug, resulting in a significant delay before approaching to other therapeutic strategies.
In cancer, more than in any other disease, time is really important, and that is well aware by GENOMICA, a Zeltia Group company, that just launched a diagnostic kit to detect such genetic alterations before implementing the therapy with anti –EGFR antibodies.
CLART® CMA KRAS•BRAF•PI3K “is capable of detecting and typing the main mutations that can occur in several genes involved in EGFR receptor blockade and who will maintain active the process of tumor growth and migration despite a treatment with anti-EGFR monoclonal antibodies” said Rosario Cospedal, CEO of GENOMICA, during the seminar held in Madrid on the April 25th. In this way,” oncologists can know whether that therapy will have an effect on their patients or have to resort to alternative one ” she adds.
Both the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) and the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) published their respective guidelines including the mandatory detection of these genetic alterations prior to implementation of treatment.
Blood in stool and abdominal pain are the main symptoms that may lead to suspicion of colorectal cancer. After this, the ultimate diagnostic test is colonoscopy, which allows the extraction of biopsies and the performance of therapeutic endoscopy. Once detected the disease, GENOMICA diagnostic kit looks for possible genetic alterations. “Mutations in KRAS and BRAF are mutually exclusive, whereas PI3K can coexist with both genes,” says the experts. The prevalence of these alterations are as follows: KRAS (up to 45% of cases), BRAF (less than 15%) and PIK3CA (about 20%).