Blood Test Study Meets Goal, Validates Epic’s Prostate Cancer Target
Xconomy San Diego — Epic Sciences has commercialized a blood test that can predict how likely a patient with late-stage prostate cancer treated with hormones is likely to respond to an additional course of such therapy. Now, the San Diego-based company has additional data that it says supports use of its tests to determine when not to use hormone therapy.
In study results published Wednesday, the presence of the specific protein fragment that Epic (not to be confused with Verona, WI-based EHR software maker Epic Systems) tests for in circulating tumor cells predicted a shorter median length of survival for men whose disease has spread beyond the gland and isn’t responding to therapies that depress testosterone levels. According to the study, the median length of time patients who had this biomarker lived without their disease worsening was about three months compared to about six months in those who did not. More strikingly, the median length of their overall survival was about eight months, compared to more than two years for those who did not have the protein fragment.
Researchers said the results suggest that patients whose tests detect the biomarker should receive chemotherapy or join a clinical trial for an investigational therapy instead of receiving additional hormone therapy.