A new gene test can help oncologists by providing deeper insights into tumors and reduce the use of unnecessary chemotherapy for some breast cancer patients.
Launched by genetics and genomics company ILife Discoveries in the capital on May 21, the new "MammaPrint & Blueprint" test will help evaluate the risk of distant recurrence of breast cancer.
It will help oncologists in identifying patients who can safely forego chemotherapy.
"The test can help doctors reduce the use of unnecessary chemotherapy by identifying the risks and its need," Anand Gupta, founder of iLife Discoveries, said in a statement.
Not all cancers have the same physiology nor do all tumors follow the same path of development.
MammaPrint is a 70-gene assay intended as a prognostic test for women of all ages.
According to Ramesh Sarin, senior consultant (surgical oncology) at Indraprastha Apollo Hospitals, with an FDA approved 70 gene-Mammaprint test now available, "we can predict the behavior of tumor by looking at its genomic profiling and manage the patient accordingly".
Blueprint is a molecular assay used in addition to the MammaPrint test in a target population of patients with early stage (stage I or II) breast cancer.
By identifying the breast cancer subtype, BluePrint allows determination of a patient's potential level of responsiveness to chemotherapy more accurately as compared to currently available technologies, with better correlation to long-term clinical treatment outcomes.
"Blueprint along with MammaPrint helps us to pick and choose a proper treatment for the patient based on their specific functional subtype and overall risk of recurrence," said Ajay Sharma, medical oncologist at Rajiv Gandhi Cancer Hospital.
Through the gene test results, patients are stratified into two distinct groups - low risk (good prognosis) or high risk (poor prognosis) of distant recurrence.
Unlike other tests, the patient is given definitive "low risk" and "high risk" results, eliminating the uncertainty of an intermediate risk score which can affect up to 39 percent of patients tested, the statement added.