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Lab21 Launches New Lung Cancer Companion Diagnostic Service

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Lab21 Limited has launched a new Companion Diagnostic testing service for non-small cell lung cancer patients.

The EML4-ALK companion diagnostic test for translocations in the ALK gene will allow physicians to select lung cancer patients likely to respond to ALK inhibitor therapy.

The test uses proprietary PCR technology and will be performed in Lab21’s accredited laboratories in Cambridge, UK.

The addition of this test expands Lab21’s current Oncology Companion Diagnostics portfolio which includes KRAS, EGFR and BRAF mutation analysis.

Clinical trials show that patients suffering from Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer (NSCLC) with translocations in the ALK gene have a significantly improved outcome when treated with an ALK inhibitor.

NSCLC affects around 1 Million patients worldwide and ~5% of those patients will have translocations in ALK. More than 80% of known translocations are with the EML4 gene.

Graham Mullis, CEO of Lab21, commented: “Launching this new oncology diagnostic service will enable access to an important new class of drugs. Lab21 already provides Companion Diagnostic services for EGFR, KRAS and BRAF mutations, working closely with a number of pharmaceutical partners, and this new service for EML4-ALK reinforces Lab21’s capabilities in providing early access to novel diagnostics.”

Lab21’s EML4-ALK service complements its EGFR service with both tests providing important results for the treatment of NSCLC patients.

Mike Annable, Divisional Director of Lab21’s Clinical Laboratory division, commented “The EML4-ALK test adds another valuable Companion Diagnostic service to our Oncology portfolio. These tests allow oncologists to tailor a patient’s treatment in order to achieve the best possible outcome and I am pleased that this service will allow access to testing throughout the UK, Europe and Middle East.”