Veracyte's prostate cancer genomic test can guide patients to best treatment, study finds

While many companies developing blood tests and genomic analyses for cancer are aiming to improve early diagnosis, most of Veracyte’s tests focus on the journey that comes after.

Its Decipher Prostate test, for one, examines the genomic profiles of patients who have already been diagnosed with prostate cancer. It looks for 22 genetic biomarkers that have been pinpointed to help determine the risk that an individual patient’s cancer will spread throughout the body.

Newly released results from a phase 3 study of the test confirm its ability to accurately score each patient’s metastasis risk, which could, in turn, speed up the time it takes for healthcare providers to design the most effective treatment plans.

RELATED: Veracyte drops $600M to acquire cancer tester Decipher Biosciences

The study focused specifically on patients with intermediate-risk prostate cancer, which has been found to vary the most of all risk groups on a person-by-person basis, according to Veracyte.

Using more than 200 biopsy samples of men diagnosed with medium-risk prostate cancer, the researchers compared the clinical outcomes of each patient after radiation therapy, tracking their progress for a median of almost 13 years.

The analysis found that the Decipher test’s risk assessment was able to help predict all of the selected endpoints, which included disease progression, biochemical failure, distant metastasis, prostate cancer-specific mortality, distant metastasis-free survival and overall survival.

Put plainly, patients who were classified by the Decipher test to be at high risk of metastasis ultimately had worse oncologic and survival outcomes across 10 years than those determined to be low-risk.

Additionally, patients with Decipher’s high-risk label experienced a more significant benefit from a higher dose of radiation therapy than those in the low-risk group, indicating that using the test results to immediately usher high-risk patients into more intense treatments could greatly improve their long-term outcomes. The results also demonstrated that those labeled low-risk by the test could see a strong benefit from radiotherapy alone, rather than requiring higher-dose therapies.

RELATED: Veracyte kicks off limited release of its nasal swab lung cancer test as it gears up for full commercial launch

In a separate retrospective analysis, Veracyte homed in on the test’s accuracy in delivering prognoses for Asian men.

Looking at biopsies and outcomes for prostate cancer patients treated at the National Cancer Centre of Singapore, the researchers not only discovered a strong correlation between the Decipher test’s results and metastasis-free survival but also identified significant differences between the tumors of prostate cancer patients in Asia and North America.

“The findings from this study could help inform personalized treatment recommendations for Asian men with prostate cancer and, more broadly, deepen our understanding of tumor biology that could benefit all men with the disease,” said Elai Davicioni, Ph.D., senior VP of scientific and clinical operations within Veracyte’s urologic cancers segment.