Back Menu
id опорной категории = 2
id текущей категории = 1
id родительской категории = 1

Genetico Center Developed a Test for Genetic Study of Tumors

GENETICO LLC (Center of Genetics and Reproductive Medicine GENETICO, hereinafter –– “GENETICO” or “the Genetico Center”), HSCI’s subsidiary, a Skolkovo resident and RVC Biofund portfolio company, has developed the Onconetix test to search for mutations in tumors and has begun its practical application in its partner clinics.

The test will help select the most effective cancer therapy individually for each patient, based on the genetic characteristics of his or her tumor. GENETICO’s laboratory is currently conducting a clinical approbation of the Onconetix test with leading oncologists in Moscow to determine the clinical significance of the test and its place in the therapy of oncological diseases.

Testing is performed by next-generation DNA sequencing (NGS). Based on the indications, 20 or 48 genes are examined for mutations of clinical significance.

As a result of the testing, the patient receives a report describing the clinically significant mutations that have been identified, as well as a list of targeted drugs the response to which is associated with the identified mutations. Targeted drugs increase the effectiveness of cancer therapy because they are aimed at a specific target, and act only on specific tumors when gene mutations are detected.

So far, the Onconetix test is recommended for the following groups of patients:

  • Patients diagnosed with cancer for which there are several options of targeted therapy (e.g., lung cancer).
  • Patients diagnosed with cancer who no longer benefit from the therapy prescribed on the basis of clinical standards.
  • Patients diagnosed with cancer for which there is no clinical standard of treatment.

The Onconetix test is currently available at GENETICO’s laboratory and at the partner clinics involved in the validation. The plan is to produce industrial samples of the test systems for use in other laboratories.

Darya Khmelkova, head of GENETICO’s oncogenetics laboratory, says, «The Onconetix test is our own development. We analyzed Russian and foreign recommendations for the treatment and diagnosis of oncological diseases, as well as panels to screen for somatic mutations available both in Russia and abroad. After this analysis, we selected a list of genes of the greatest clinical significance and target sites in these genes where clinically significant mutations were reliably described. We got a fairly unique panel that is similar in size and cost to some of the small commercial panels from such manufacturers as Illumina and ThermoFisher. However, unlike these panels, Onconetix includes such important genes as histone genes (H3F3A, HIST1H3B, HIST1H3C) and the TERT gene promoter, important for diagnosing patients with CNS tumors, and the MET gene region, mutations in which lead to exon 14 skipping and are associated with response to specific targeted therapies for lung cancer.»

Mikhail Fedotov, Director of RVC’s subsidiary funds, says, «Despite the negative impact of COVID-19 on all technological innovation market participants, GEETICO demonstrates sustainable development, maintaining a good rate of growth and R&D. Even small companies conducting research in the fields of cell and gene therapy have a good chance of success, also as part of combination therapies for cancer. But one of the main conditions is to bridge the gap between development and its subsequent marketing and scaling. Therefore, today it is important to support these developments and make such services available and known to a wide range of patients.»

The Oncogenetics Laboratory has been operating at the Genetico Center since 2018. Its tasks include developing and conducting molecular genetic studies for cancer patients in order to select the most effective targeted therapy aimed at the selective destruction of cancer cells. The laboratory is also engaged in diagnosing a hereditary predisposition to a number of genetically determined inherited diseases associated with an increased risk of cancer.