Target Now – pro

Caris Life Sciences’™ molecular profiling test, Caris Target Now®, examines the genetic and molecular changes of a patient’s tumor so that treatment options may be matched to the tumor’s molecular profile.

Caris Target Now purports to help treating physicians create a cancer treatment plan based on the tumor tested. By comparing the tumor’s information with data from published clinical studies by thousands of the world’s leading cancer researchers, Caris claims to be able to help determine which treatments are likely to be most effective and, just as important, which treatments are likely to be ineffective.

This approach represents a cutting edge of diagnostic science, sometimes termed, “Personalized Medciine”. The concept that one can individualize cancer therapy based on specific tumor characteristics is attractive but needs to be proven before being widely adapted. As of now, there is little evidence to support it and no guidelines or professional bodies recommending it.

Caris writes on its website: “Our evidence team has reviewed more than 60,000 clinical literature manuscripts that support associations between biomarkers and treatments. The Caris Target Now database is continually updated with the latest research and emerging biomarker information.

This ongoing process ensures that only the most relevant and appropriate tests are included in the Caris Target Now panel. Better information can lead to better decisions. Better decisions can lead to better health outcomes.”

This process and information remains proprietary and not peer-reviewed.

More recently, Mammaprint had been marketed as a Symphony Panel that also includes the microarray-based test TargetPrint further provides reliable, quantitative assessment of mRNA expression levels of estrogen receptor (ER), progesterone receptor (PR) and human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) and BluePrint.

Besides that these two tests still need to be fully validated, there is no literature support for the three together being more accurate or productive of more benefit than either one. The same holds true of BluePrint, an 80-gene expression signature for the classification of breast cancer into Basal-type, Luminal-type and ERBB2-type.

Daniel D. Von Hoff et al, Pilot Study Using Molecular Profiling of Patients’ Tumors to Find Potential Targets and Select Treatments for Their Refractory Cancers JCO October 4, 2010

Gevensleben H, Göhring UJ, Büttner R, Heukamp LC, Kunz G, Dimpfl T, Jackisch C, Ortmann O, Albert US, Bender R, De Snoo F, Krijgsman O, Glas AM, Ergönenc YH, Vogel C, Dykgers A, Langwieder C, Rees M, Anzeneder T. Comparison of MammaPrint and TargetPrint results with clinical parameters in German patients with early stage breast cancer. Int J Mol Med. 2010 Dec;26(6):837-43.

Burstein HJ.Personalized medicine and breast cancer care. J Natl Compr Canc Netw. 2009 Feb;7(2):109.

Companion Diagnostics in Personalized Medicine and Cancer Therapy, Trimark Publications (190 pages), published Apr 2008

Ken Garber, Ready or Not: Personal Tumor Profiling Tests Take Off. JNCI J Natl Cancer Inst (2011) 103(2): 84-86.

J. Hasset et al, Adoption of Gene Expression Profile Testing and Association With Use of Chemotherapy Among Women With Breast CancerJCO (2012) 30 (18): 2218-2226

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