Abbott, Janssen to collaborate on leukemia diagnostic test
Abbott and Janssen Biotech have announced a collaboration with Pharmacyclics to develop a companion diagnostic test to identify patients with a genetic form of leukemia.
The collaboration will explore the benefits of Abbott’s proprietary FISH (fluorescence in situ hybridization) technology and to find out how it can be used to develop a molecular companion diagnostic test to identify patients with a genetic subtype of chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), the most common form of adult leukemia.
Under terms of the agreement, Abbott will develop a FISH-based test to identify high-risk CLL patients who have a deletion within a specific chromosome (chromosome 17p (del17p)) and may respond to ibrutinib. Ibrutinib is currently in development by Janssen and Pharmacyclics for several B-cell malignancies, including chronic leukemia and lymphoma, and was recently granted two US FDA oncology Breakthrough Therapy designations.
“Like Abbott’s other collaborations in the area of companion diagnostics, our goal is to leverage molecular technologies to help ensure that the right medicine is getting to the right person. Cancer is a complex disease where, historically, therapies have demonstrated only a 25 percent efficacy rate. Companion diagnostic tests can help improve these outcomes by selecting patients that are more likely to respond to specific therapies, reducing time to the most effective treatment and increasing the number of positive outcomes.”
John Coulter, vice president, Molecular Diagnostics, Abbott.
In the future, according to the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), cancer therapies will be developed through molecular approaches like this that can accelerate the development of more effective, personalised therapies.
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