NEW YORK, NY, May 9, 2013
Announcement of a new prostate cancer screener could answer the prostate cancer community’s call for testing improvements. Unlike the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test, the new Oncotype DX Prostate Cancer test uses advanced genetic methods to more accurately distinguish between aggressive prostate cancer and low-risk prostate cancer. The breakthrough, according to Dr. David Samadi, may be just what’s needed for better risk assessment and more targeted prostate cancer treatment planning.
The Oncotype DX prostate cancer test was introduced this week at the annual meeting of the American Urological Association where Dr. Samadi, Chief of Robotics and Minimally Invasive Surgery and Vice Chairman of the Department of Urology at The Mount Sinai Medical Center, is also presenting information.Genomic Health, maker of the Oncotype DX, claims the new test will significantly improve prostate cancer staging. If so, prostate cancer experts and men could soon be making more informed treatment decisions regarding popular choices like watchful waiting and robotic prostate surgery.
Building on the success of their genetic breast cancer screener, Genomic Health designed the new prostate cancer test to analyze the activity levels of 17 cancer-related genes and five control genes. Gene inclusion was based on impact on cell growth, androgen hormone metabolism, and additional tumor-related processes.
“If we continue routine PSA screening, advanced genetic tests like this one could be the perfect intermediate step before a prostate biopsy,” suggested Dr. Samadi. “Ultimately, men who undergo biopsy and prostate surgery will have even greater assurance that they’re taking the right steps for lifelong wellness.”
Prior to launch, Genomic Health evaluated the biopsy samples of 400 men whose cancerous prostates were removed and previously deemed low risk during post-surgery analysis. In re-testing the samples with the Oncotype DX, researchers were able to match the results in 50 percent of the cases.
“The more we do to help patients make individual, informed prostate cancer treatment decisions, the better,” said Dr. Samadi. “I look forward to the results of further Oncotype DX testing and other genetic evaluators to come.”
David B. Samadi, MD