Merck announced today that the company has signed an agreement to collaborate with Sysmex Inostics GmbH, Hamburg, Germany, for the development and commercialization of a blood-based RAS biomarker test for patients with metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC). This global agreement was formally signed at a ceremony coinciding with the 50th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) in Chicago, U.S.
Blood-based biomarker testing is a faster and easier approach for determining the mutation status of tumors as it requires a small blood sample rather than a tissue biopsy procedure.1 The test has the potential to provide mutation status results within days, which in turn can help guide treatment decisions.1 In addition, it may become the method of choice where a tissue biopsy is difficult to obtain, for example in patients whose physical condition does not allow for a surgical procedure.
“We are delighted to announce our strategic partnership with Sysmex Inostics,” said Belén Garijo, President and CEO of Merck Serono. “As a company, we have embraced the principles of personalized medicine and predictive biomarkers. This collaboration reflects our commitment to leveraging our expertise in personalized medicine and predictive biomarkers in order to enhance Erbitux’s value proposition for patients, physicians and payers.”
“We are looking forward to this important collaboration with Merck Serono and to bringing our innovative technology to mCRC patients,” said Fernando Andreu, CEO of Sysmex Inostics. “Together with our non-invasive, blood-based diagnostics and Merck’s expertise in personalized medicine, we will open up new possibilities to advance biomarker testing in mCRC. This collaboration is another major step in enhancing the clinical value of Sysmex Inostics’s OncoBEAM tests and exemplifies Sysmex’s overall strategy to bring sensitive blood-based testing to the Oncology field.”