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Whatman Provides FTA Elute to NCRI Prostate Cancer Biomarker Study

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Whatman has announced that it will provide DNA collection kits based on its proprietary FTA® Elute technology for a pharmacogenotyping study looking at genetic markers in prostate cancer.

The international study is part of the Systemic Therapy in Advancing or Metastatic Prostate Cancer: Evaluation of Drug Efficacy (STAMPEDE) trial.

The trial is being conducted through the UK Medical Research Council Clinical Trials Unit, London and the University of Birmingham. It is sponsored by UK Medical Research Council, funded by Cancer Research UK and supported by the National Cancer Research Institute and National Cancer Research Network.

STAMPEDE is a multi-stage randomized controlled trial for patients with newly diagnosed advanced prostate cancer or for patients with a rapid PSA rise following previous surgery or radiotherapy. The sub study is designed to increase understanding of metabolic pathways by which androgen blocking drugs affect patients.

In addition, the sub study will examine the interaction between pharmaceuticals and genetics by comparing the response to one of six treatment combinations with the patients’ genetic profile.

Each of the estimated 3,300 patients with advanced prostate cancer, who will participate in one of the five stages of the study, will have the option to contribute a sample of genetic material using the Whatman FTA Elute kit.

FTA Elute utilizes a chemically-treated matrix that lyses cells and immobilizes nucleic acids on contact, enabling scientists to collect, transport, archive, and isolate DNA and RNA samples at room temperature in a single step.

“FTA Elute fits the parameters of this study well, in that it provides the ability to gather and store genetic information efficiently and safely to help researchers extract as much information from the samples as possible,” said Nicholas James, Professor of Clinical Oncology at the University of Birmingham and  Chief Investigator of STAMPEDE.

“Being able to archive samples at room temperature is a real strength of this system. This way, if we need to review DNA for certain SNPs or genes down the road, we’ll have everything we need on hand,” James continued.

The sub study will isolate small sections of patients’ DNA for analysis to identify single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) biomarkers - essentially minute variations between individuals’ DNA – that differentiate how patients may respond to a given therapy. Researchers hope to uncover links between certain SNPs and drug efficacy, side-effects, or individual susceptibility to prostate cancer.