Devices & Diagnostics

Cancer Genetics CEO: Venture with Mayo will make cancer diagnostics available to wider audience

The recent news that the Mayo Clinic is teaming up with New Jersey based Cancer Genetics in a joint venture underlines the surge of interest in personalized medicine. In an interview with MedCity News, Cancer Genetics (OTCQB:CGIX) CEO Panna Sharma said that one of the goals of the joint venture is to makeĀ  diagnostic products […]

The recent news that the Mayo Clinic is teaming up with New Jersey based Cancer Genetics in a joint venture underlines the surge of interest in personalized medicine. In an interview with MedCity News, Cancer Genetics (OTCQB:CGIX) CEO Panna Sharma said that one of the goals of the joint venture is to make  diagnostic products commercially available to a wider audience.

“Adoption and commercial availability has really been a challenge in genomics and we want to confront that issue head on.”

The joint venture called OncoSpire Genomics, will initially focus on developing diagnostics for hematological and urogenital cancers using next-generation DNA sequencing. Sharma said it expects to announce more details about the products under development in the next two months

Sharma added that he believes the Affordable Care Act will help the company. “I think ACA is definitely a positive because it will force all kinds of care providers to think about what value these genomic tests have and overall I think it is very much a positive. For companies like ours that are thinking about the economic success, that is a big win.”

Reimbursement is currently the biggest challenge facing the personalized medicine industry. Angelina Jolie’s breast cancer surgery drew attention to the fact that although some insurers may reimburse for the test, they may not reimburse for preventive surgery and vice versa. In a recent presentation to the Personalized Medicine Coalition Janet Woodcock, director of the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research at the US Food and Drug Administration, said up to half of companies’ drug pipelines are targeted therapies. About a third of new entities approved by the FDA last year had some type of genotyped biomarker in its marketing application.