For women who survive breast cancer, the triumph of beating the odds is often tempered by a fear of the cancer returning. A study published last year in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute looked at 3,000 breast cancer patients, and found that the group averaged an 11 percent chance of recurrence five years after undergoing adjuvant therapy (such as chemotherapy). That figure was slightly lower for early-stage patients, and slightly higher for stage III patients. After 10 years, the overall group’s risk increased to 20 percent.
A new test promises to help early-stage breast cancer patients determine their risk of recurrence. Clarient, a provider of comprehensive anatomic pathology and molecular testing services, is launching a new breast cancer test that helps physicians calculate the probability of a patient’s cancer returning. The test, called the Clarient Insight Dx Breast Cancer Profile, has been clinically validated for women with early-stage, hormone-receptor positive breast cancer. These patients face the critical decision of whether or not to undergo chemotherapy. Knowing their odds of recurrence can assist them in the decision-making process.
The test is unique in that it examines both molecular markers and pathology staging risk factors. Staging risk factors are tumor size, tumor grade, and lymph node involvement. The test looks for seven different molecular markers, including ER, PR, and HER2. The data is plugged into a proprietary algorithm to generate a risk score that aids in clinical decision-making. Patients are classified as “Low Risk” or “High Risk” based upon the results. A study found that after 10 years, the low-risk group had only a 3 percent recurrence of breast cancer 10 years after surgery, while the high-risk group had a 62 percent recurrence.
Clarient was also recently granted exclusive rights to commercialize the breast cancer biomarker FOXA1 by the Indiana University Research and Technology Corporation. FOXA1, which is known to cause breast cancer, will be used to complement the Insight Dx Breast Cancer Profile.
Related video: Ron A. Andrews, CEO of Clarient