Molecular diagnostics firm Biocartis has launched Idylla GeneFusion Assay as a rapid lab workflow solution for gene fusion testing.

In a single cartridge, the new test detects a wide variety of gene fusions, which are considered to be relevant in cancer research.

It provides the results in about three hours, which is much faster than other tests. The Nextgeneration Sequencing (NGS) test often takes days or even weeks for the results to be available.

With a highly multiplexed panel of biomarkers, the Idylla GeneFusion Assay is claimed to be the first FFPE4 RNA5-based assay on the Idylla platform.

It combines the traditional testing workflows into a fully automated process and provides objective information on ALK, ROS1, RET, NTRK1/2/3 fusions and MET exon 14 skipping, all in a single cartridge and from 1-3 slices of FFPE tissue.

Biocartis CEO Herman Verrelst said: “Thanks to a unique combination of two detection technologies, the Idylla GeneFusion Assay (RUO) contains all relevant gene fusion biomarkers in one single cartridge, allowing labs to rapidly integrate gene fusion testing in their workflows.

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“The benefits of this assay not only include its speed and simplicity, but it also requires limited sample input thereby saving valuable tissue specimens.”

Gene fusions represent a key class of somatic alterations in cancer and important biomarkers for cancer diagnosis and prognosis, as well as the selection of targeted therapies.

Many gene fusions have been discovered in haematological cancers, solid tumours and sarcomas in the last 20 years.

At present, the gene fusion testing techniques are said to be complex, as they require a combination of different technologies to test all needed biomarkers and are only available in different laboratories.