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“Multi-Omic” Diagnostic Test Will Accelerate Implementation of Personalized Healthcare

By Labmedica International staff writers
Posted on 06 Mar 2013
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Personalized healthcare, giving the appropriate therapy to the individual patient, depends on high-value diagnostics that can guide “which patients” will respond to “which therapy” within a specific disease.

Sylventa (Cambridge, MA, USA) is developing Systems Diagnostics (SysDx) a novel diagnostic test that can consist of “multi-omic” biomarkers selected through a rigorous Big Data analysis of a patient’s biological profile including genomic, epigenomic, transcriptomic, proteomic, metabolomic, and electronic medical record information.

From this analysis, Selventa will generate a differentiated and clinically relevant report that physicians and patients can use to improve therapy selection.

Most chronic diseases, including asthma, diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, late-onset Alzheimer’s disease, and most cancers, are too complex to rely on genomic variations alone. Instead, the molecular drivers of disease are manifested across thousands of interrelated, biochemical pathways and these disease-drivers need to be thoroughly interrogated in order to provide effective treatment options.

Dr. David de Graaf, president and CEO Selventa, remarked, “SysDx is a natural outgrowth of our successful 10-year heritage as a leader in systems biology and biomarker identification for pharma and biotech. Our ‘Big Data’ analytics and algorithms uniquely integrate, process, and analyze different molecular information from thousands of patients to identify biomarkers. This unique capability is the foundation for SysDx tests that will have stronger validation, higher reliability, and provide superior predictive and prognostic capabilities.”

Selventa is currently focusing its SysDx development in autoimmune diseases and cancer. These complex multifactorial diseases require more than genetic information alone to gain an effective diagnosis that can guide treatment. Selventa’s lead product will be Clarify-RA, a SysDx test that will be able to predict which patients suffering from rheumatoid arthritis (RA) will not respond to the standard of care antitumor necrosis factor (TNF) therapy. RA is a chronic, debilitating disease that affects an estimated 2 million people in the United States. It is also an expensive disease to treat, costing the healthcare system on average USD 20,000 per patient every year. In moderate to severe RA patients, only 40% of patients gain a clinically significant benefit from the anti-TNFs.

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Image: Sysmex XE-5000 automated hematology analyzer (Photo courtesy of Sysmex Corporation).

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