Developing proteomic signatures focus pancreatic cancer therapy

Biodesix, a Boulder, CO-based company developing diagnostics based on mass spectrometry technology, has found a proteomic signature after its analysis of a clinical trial of GlobeImmune's GI-4000 cancer vaccine in pancreatic cancer. The companies are collaborating to create a diagnostic test to identify the patients most likely to respond to treatment. This personalized approach could speed up clinical trials, as well as improve the outcome for patients.

In the Phase II study, presented at the European Society of Medical Oncology's 14th World Congress on Gastrointestinal Cancer, patients with Ras mutant positive adenocarcinoma of the pancreas received gemcitabine alone or in combination with GI-4000, with an aim to assess GI-4000's ability to prevent disease recurrence.

The addition of GI-4000 improved both one-year survival and recurrence-free survival. Using Biodesix' ProTS mass spectrometry-based technology platform, the researchers found a proteomic signature in around half of the individuals who had a better response to GI-4000.

Dr. David Apelian, GlobeImmune's senior vice president of R&D and chief medical officer, added: "Biodesix' approach revealed a potential avenue to select patients who are more likely to benefit from GI-4000 therapy, and we are pleased to continue this work with them."

If this signature can be validated, it has potential as a marker for use in clinical trials, and in treatment of patients if the vaccine makes it to the market. According to the company, this is the first presentation of data resulting from a corporate partnership to explore development of a new diagnostic test based on Biodesix' technology, and, as such, it provides the company with a level of validation for its biomarker platform.

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