Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Clinical trials moving forward to take into account molecular profiles of tumors

Researchers are going one step farther with clinical trials and working to selectively target tumors based on their molecular profile.  Susan Young of MIT Technology Review shares that scientists are looking at the specific makeup of the tumor as opposed to the traditional trial-and-error method currently in use with most clinical trials taking place today.  The new technology developed makes sequencing the makeup both cheaper and more reliable. Drug companies, academic researchers, federal regulators, and patient advocacy groups are all working together to make these advanced trials become a reality.

Young goes into more detail about this protocol "master protocol":
The trial, dubbed the “master protocol,” will test several new lung cancer drugs, which will be given to patients individually based on the genomic profile of their tumors. If successful, the new trial setup could bring forward a faster and more efficient way of conducting late-stage patient trials.

Researchers will identify the common genomic profiles of squamous cell lung cancer and aligning those profiles with the treatments that are known to fight the disease. Those who do not fit the profiles of the drug-matched tumor treatments are still able to join the clinical trial.  The clinical trial is set to start in 2014.

There are many partnerships working together to make this new, cutting edge trial work.  Academics are partnering with drug companies and regulators to fit the needs of the patient.  This spring at Partnerships in Clinical Trials, we'll bring together key players from the clinical trials industry to facilitate conversation and a collaborative environment to develop the right partnerships to get the right drugs to the right patients.  We're putting the finishing touches on the agenda - so sign up to receive email updates on the new agenda.  If you'd like to join us March 30-April 2, 2014 in Las Vegas, as a reader of this blog when you register to join us and mention code XP1900BLOG, you're eligible to save $100 off the current rate! 

What are some of the challenges you see that the clinical trials industry has to overcome when doing clinical trials on such a targeted, personalized level?

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