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Last Updated Sunday June 04 2017 11:58 AM IST

Blood test for cancer treatment becomes a reality

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Blood test for cancer treatment becomes a reality Representative image

Kochi: MedGenome, India’s premier genomics based research and diagnostics company, has announced the launch of 'Oncotrack', a liquid biopsy non-invasive screening test that is set to transform the way Indian physicians can identify genetic alterations, interpret, assess and treat various forms of cancer.

India is likely to have over 1.73 million new cases of cancer and over 880,000 deaths due to the disease by 2020. Around 70 percent of all cancer patients approach the doctor when the disease has advanced, and the chances of cure are very low.

“Management of cancer will undergo a massive transformation in India with NGS based liquid biopsies. We are constantly striving to get the most advanced genetic testing technology/technique at affordable prices to the patients and Oncotrack is one such offering,” said Sam Santhosh, chairman, MedGenome.

The test, developed entirely by MedGenome, is the only one to be validated in India and verified from samples of cancer patients from across the country. The test screens the samples by analyzing cell-free DNA that is isolated from the patients’ blood. Using high-end sequencing technology, the screening process identifies specific gene mutations that are linked with melanoma, lung and colon cancers. The test facilitates detection of mutation where there is difficulty of obtaining biopsy or in the event of a damaged biopsy material and non-availability of tissue biopsy. This offers oncologists the power to look for actionable alterations in a patient's treatment, management, without having to do an invasive biopsy or where biopsy is not an option.

Also read: Until DNA do them part: here’s why you shouldn’t marry your cousin | Video

“Liquid biopsy has the capacity to interpret infinite mutations, which will pave the way for new drug discovery, research and therapies. Over 35 oncologists in India have already screened patients using our Oncotrack. Further, since it has a very patient friendly approach, we are confident it will be very well accepted by the doctors and patients,” said Dr V.L. Ramprasad, COO, MedGenome.

MedGenome is a genomics-driven research and diagnostics company with a mission to improve global health by decoding the genetic information contained in an individual’s genome.

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