Gene Model Predicts Recurrence Risk in Early-Stage NSCLC
Researchers have developed a lung “metagene” model that accurately predicts the risk of recurrence for patients diagnosed with early-stage (IA) non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC), according to results published in the August 9 New England Journal of Medicine.
Previous studies have shown the benefit of adjuvant chemotherapy after surgery for patients with later stages of NSCLC, but not for stage IA disease. However, about 25 percent of patients in that stage subsequently have a recurrence, suggesting a need to identify a subgroup that might benefit from adjuvant drug treatment, noted the researchers, led by Dr. Anil Potti of the Duke Institute for Genome Sciences & Policy at Duke University. Read more
Getting New Interventions to Patients More Quickly
There is much excitement in the cancer research community about the rapid discovery of biomarkers. These discoveries range from protein signatures that may predict recurrence or response to therapy, to new imaging technologies that measure the extent of drug-target interactions. The combination of these types of biomarker discoveries with studies that are demonstrating the predictive prowess of gene-expression profiles, like the one highlighted in this week's lead story, is generating tremendous optimism about the future of personalized oncology care.
Of course, advanced technologies have significantly improved our ability to discover potential biomarkers. But biomarker discovery is only the beginning. The harder part is to qualify or validate the biomarker - that is, conduct the clinical studies and develop the correlative data that definitively describe the precise clinical meaning of a given biomarker in a specific situation. Read more