Qiagen unveils 3 next-generation sequencing panels for cancer R&D

Qiagen HQ
In the third quarter, Qiagen saw 9% growth in its molecular diagnostics offerings, which account for half of the company’s sales. (Qiagen)

Qiagen is launching three next-generation sequencing workflows for cancer research, expanding the clinical oncology footprint of the German company’s GeneReader platform.

Two new GeneRead QIAact panels aim to provide additional genomic insights, with one covering a broad range of cancer-causing variants and the other focusing on genes tied to breast and ovarian cancers. In addition, a new QIAseq panel is being made available for any commercial NGS system to measure the tumor mutational burden biomarker, for assessing patient responses to checkpoint inhibitors.

One feature of the new offerings is the detection of copy number variations down to the exon level, as well as larger, pathogenic deletions, Qiagen said in a statement. The system can also detect alterations in non-coding DNA regions that may undermine tumor-suppressing genes.

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The GeneRead QIAact Actionable Insights Tumor DNA UMI panel expands coverage from 12 to 30 genes that influence the progression of cancers of the lung and prostate, as well as melanomas and other solid tumors. It also targets more than 850 DNA variants as well as 125 full exons.

RELATED: FDA approves Qiagen EGFR companion diagnostic to Pfizer’s Vizimpro in first-line NSCLC

Meanwhile, the BRCA Advanced UMI panel analyzes full-exon coding sequences of the BRCA1, BRCA2, TP53 and PTEN genes in breast, ovarian and other cancers.

The TMB panel aims to predict responses to immunotherapies by identifying variants in 486 genes that cover full exons. In a single panel, it can quantify tumor mutational burden, microsatellite instability status, single-nucleotide changes and small insertions or deletions in DNA.

Qiagen also unveiled parallel updates to its bioinformatics solutions, to interpret and report tumor mutation burden and microsatellite instability—as well as a new Qiagen Clinical Insight workflow solution, QCI Analyze Universal, that supports all major clinical sequencing platforms and assay types, the company said.

RELATED: Qiagen launches TB and molecular diagnostic tests with 2 companies

In its third-quarter earnings report, Qiagen saw 9% growth in its molecular diagnostics offerings—which account for half of the company’s sales—supported by its latent tuberculosis test and companion diagnostic co-development projects with pharma companies.

Total net sales grew 3.8% to $377.9 million compared to the third quarter of 2017, following a 2.7 percentage-point reduction due to adverse currency movements against the U.S. dollar, the company said. Qiagen posted a net income of $60.3 million; a 24.3% increase compared to the $48.5 million brought in during the same quarter last year.

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