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Thermo Fisher Expands GlobalAccess Sequencing Program to Oncology Labs

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Thermo Fisher Scientific has announced the expansion of its GlobalAccess Sequencing Program to include laboratories working in oncology. Originally introduced to accelerate multi-institutional-led studies focused on SARS-CoV-2, the expanded program now provides support to labs facing significant constraints as a result of the global pandemic by offering faster access to comprehensive, single-day molecular profiling of tumor tissue on Thermo Fisher’s Ion Torrent Genexus System.

“We know that the COVID-19 pandemic has interrupted the way laboratories function on a daily basis. For some, it has deeply impacted their ability to serve customers in circumstances where time is of the essence,” said Garret Hampton, president of clinical next-generation sequencing and oncology at Thermo Fisher Scientific. “At this unprecedented time, sustaining the momentum in oncology is paramount. Extending the benefits of GlobalAccess to this community is a natural extension of our mission to enable our customers to help make the world healthier.”

Under the GlobalAccess Sequencing Program, Thermo Fisher will subsidize a limited number of Genexus Systems for a short time in alignment with the company’s commitment to serve its customers and their important work during the global pandemic. The program, which is open to pathology laboratories that currently run or wish to begin sequencing samples with oncology assays, is available immediately and will continue through the end of this year.

The Genexus System was launched in November 2019 with the Oncomine Precision Assay, which most recently received Breakthrough Device Designation by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to identify low-grade glioma (LGG) patients with isocitrate dehydrogenase 1 and 2 (IDH1 and IDH2) mutations who may be eligible for vorasidenib (AG-881). It is a turnkey next-generation sequencing (NGS) solution featuring an automated specimen-to-report workflow that delivers results in a single day.

With only five minutes of hands-on time required, the system is designed to minimize user intervention and is conducive for maintaining social distancing requirements in a decentralized lab setting. It also requires minimal amounts of tissue sample and can run small batches cost-effectively. All together, these features position the Genexus System to enable a future in which local hospitals can adopt NGS testing in-house and sets the stage for molecular pathologists to eventually analyze NGS information in parallel with first-line testing modalities, such as immunohistochemistry (IHC).

In May, Thermo Fisher announced the SARS-CoV-2 GlobalAccess program to accelerate multi-institutional efforts focused on mapping coronavirus transmission and epidemiological studies by research consortia and industry groups battling the pandemic. It was introduced shortly after the company optimized the Ion AmpliSeq SARS-CoV-2 Research Panel for the Genexus System. The sequencer and the panel provide laboratories with a powerful, specimen-to-report workflow to carry out infectious disease studies using minimal amounts of sample.