IPSOGEN SA (Marseille and New Haven), a cancer profiler that develops and markets molecular diagnostic assays for blood & breast cancers, announced that researchers from the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center (MDACC, Houston, TX) will present the results of two studies on the Genomic Grade index (GGi) at the ASCO Annual Meeting, held in Chicago from May 30 to June 3, 2008.
The data indicate that the Genomic Grade index predicts response to chemotherapy in breast cancer. A third study extends the pronostic utility of the GGi to inflammatory breast cancer.
The Genomic Grade index (GGi) is a 97-gene measure of tumor grade, a key prognostic indicator of breast cancer agressiveness closely related to cellular proliferation. Ipsogen is the exclusive worldwide licensee of the GGi technologies.
In a preliminary study published in May 2008 in Breast Cancer Research conducted on 133 patients, MDACC researchers had found that, among 852 genomic indexes describing biological pathways, the GGi was one of the most promising candidate for predicting response to chemotherapy.
In the first study to be presented, Dr. Symmans and colleagues from MDACC and Institut Bordet (Brussels, Belgium) validated the GGi as a predictive marker of chemotherapy response in 229 patients with HER2-normal breast cancer.
All patients were treated with a current standard chemotherapy regimen, T/FAC (6 months of paclitaxel followed by 5-fluoruracil, doxorubicin, and cyclophosphamide) then by surgery. In such preoperative chemotherapy settings, treatment efficacy can be rapidly & precisely assessed by examining the resected tumor in a pathology laboratory.
This study concludes that high GGi is predictive for increased sensitivity to T/FAC chemotherapy in both ER- and ER+ patients. In addition, the GGi can be combined with ER and nodal status to predict which patients will not respond to preoperative T/FAC chemotherapy in 72 % of cases.
"This work demonstrates that high genomic grade, as a robust measure of proliferation in the tumor cells, is associated with benefit from chemotherapy. In the context of other published work it underlines the association between high tumoral proliferation rate and chemosensitivity, endocrine insensitivity and worse prognosis" comments Dr. Symmans, associate Professor of Pathology at the MDACC.