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AstraZeneca to develop Lynparza companion diagnostic

Will collaborate with Foundation Medicine on test for its ovarian cancer drug

AstraZeneca (AZ) is to develop a companion diagnostic for its ovarian cancer treatment Lynparza, enabling physicians to better identify patients who will benefit from the drug.

The pharma firm hopes to be able to employ a coordinated drug-diagnostic regulatory strategy for the combination and so provide a more targeted service for advanced-stage ovarian cancer patients who typically have limited treatment options.

To do so AZ has joined forces with molecular information firm Foundation Medicines, whose FoundationOne genomic profiling platform will be used to develop the test.

Nina Mojas, global medicine lead for Lynparza at AstraZeneca, said: “Utilising Foundation Medicine's leading capabilities in molecular information will help our work to assess the potential of the medicine to address unmet patient need across a number of cancers driven by DNA repair deficiencies, including - and significantly - beyond the BRCA mutations.”

Lynparza (olaparib) is a maintenance treatment for BRCA-positive ovarian, fallopian tube and peritoneal cancer patients who are in complete or partial response to platinum-based chemotherapy.

The first-in-class drug, an orally-delivered poly ADP-ribose polymerase (PARP) inhibitor, exploits tumour DNA repair pathway deficiencies to kill cancer cells.

The new diagnostic tool will detect multiple classes of genomic alterations in genes known to be involved in driving the Homologous Recombination Repair (HRR) process, and so identify patients that will benefit from being treated with Lynparza.

Ovarian cancer is the fifth most common cancer in women, with epithelial – similar to fallopian tube and peritoneal cancer – the most common type. Women who have the BRCA 1 or 2 gene mutations have an increased risk of ovarian cancer.

Article by
Rebecca Clifford

6th June 2016

From: Research



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