Roche announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the VENTANA ALK (D5F3) CDx Assay for use on the VENTANA BenchMark ULTRA automated slide stainer. The assay is a companion diagnostic to aid in the identification of ALK-positive lung cancer patients who are eligible for treatment with Pfizer's FDA-approved therapy XALKORI® (crizotinib).
The VENTANA ALK (D5F3) CDx Assay was approved in 2012 in countries accepting the CE mark and by the China Food and Drug Administration (CFDA) in 2013. It received FDA Class III approval in June 2015 for use on VENTANA BenchMark XT system. Due to an established presence of the BenchMark ULTRA system in laboratories globally, this latest approval means even more non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients may benefit from improved treatment options.
"ALK is an important biomarker found in non-small cell lung cancer. Detection and inhibition of this biomarker can help shrink tumors in some ALK-positive patients," said Ann Costello, Head of Roche Tissue Diagnostics. "The FDA's approval of the VENTANA ALK CDx Assay on the VENTANA BenchMark ULTRA system underscores our continued commitment to expanding the identification of NSCLC patients who may be eligible for improved treatment options."
Lung cancer remains the leading cause of cancer deaths with an annual estimated 12.9 percent of all new cancer cases and nearly 1.6 million deaths worldwide. NSCLC accounts for approximately 85 percent of all lung cancer cases. During the past three decades, lung cancer has shown the least improvement in survival rates when compared with other cancers.
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