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Personalis Joins Top UK Cancer Research Organizations To Evaluate Earlier Cancer Recurrence Detection

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Personalis, Inc. (Nasdaq: PSNL), Cancer Research UK’s Cancer Research Horizons, University College London (UCL), and the Francis Crick Institute have announced a collaboration to deploy NeXT Personal, a personalized liquid biopsy-based research assay, for the TRACERx study, a groundbreaking lung cancer initiative funded by Cancer Research UK.

Previously reported findings from the TRACERx study have transformed our understanding of the evolution of the most common type of lung cancer, non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), and the TRACERx research team is taking practical steps to make precision medicine for lung cancer patients a reality. The study will utilize Personalis’ NeXT Personal assay, which has demonstrated high sensitivity for detecting a key marker – circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) – from a patient’s blood sample, with the goal of enabling earlier detection of residual or recurrent cancer.

The current standard of care for NSCLC relapse detection is primarily focused on imaging modalities such as the CT scan, which are known to be limited in their sensitivity. The collaboration is focused on addressing this challenge through advanced ctDNA analysis. As part of TRACERx, the teams will use NeXT Personal to identify and track minimal residual disease (MRD) in patients post-surgery, potentially before relapse is detected through standard of care technologies.

“Thanks to the TRACERx study, we’ve already seen the importance of ctDNA in predicting cancer recurrence in an initial cohort of patients,” said Professor Charles Swanton, MD, PhD, University College London (UCL) and the Francis Crick Institute, and Cancer Research UK's chief clinician and lead researcher of TRACERx. “Personalis’ highly sensitive NeXT Personal assay will allow us to achieve a rich understanding of the complex tumour ecosystem, including by tracking clinically-relevant ctDNA variants at recurrence, and ultimately allowing us to make more informed decisions about patient care.”

"The TRACERx study is greatly advancing our understanding of lung cancer and cancer biology more broadly. Our high sensitivity NeXT Personal MRD assay is uniquely poised to support the study by providing insights about how tumor biology changes over time and by enabling earlier detection of MRD and cancer recurrence. We believe this collaboration will ultimately contribute to an advanced standard of care for cancer patients," said Richard Chen, MS, MD, Chief Medical Officer and Executive Vice President of R&D at Personalis.