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Roche researches new cancer test

The Roche subsidiary Ventana Medical Systems has entered into a collaboration agreement with US company Loxo Oncology. The partnership will develop a diagnostic test to identify treatment methods for tumours.

Roche works on a new cancer test. (generic image)

Immunohistochemistry (IHC) identifies tumour cells using marked antibodies. Now, Ventana Medical Systems and Loxo Oncology are to develop a pan-TRK-IHC test to identify patients whose tumours are suitable for treatment with the larotrectinib drug.

Loxo Oncology developed the drug to treat cancer types that harbour abnormalities involving the protein tropomyosin receptor kinases (TRKs). The drug is in the clinical development phase.

“We are excited to partner with Roche, the global leader in developing and commercializing IHC assays for cancer diagnostics,” commented Josh Bilenker, CEO of Loxo Oncology, in a statement. He added that IHC played an important role in cancer research due to its speed, limited tissue requirements and low cost.

For their partnership, the two companies will use a Loxo Oncology test that has been developed as a pilot project. Roche will further develop the test using its OptiView DAB technology. Following the development work, the companies will work towards securing the test approval with the American Food and Drug Administration.

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