The US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) New England Veteran’s Integrated Service Network (VISN 1) has selected Personal Genome Diagnostics (PGDx) to offer targeted genomic testing services for a new Precision Oncology Program (POP).

PGDx’s CancerSelect targeted gene panel will run for patients in the programme with newly-diagnosed lung cancer, and it will detect alterations in 88 well-characterised genes that include nearly all targets of currently available or investigational cancer treatments.

POP is being established by the Department of Veterans Affairs VISN 1 to support the collection and improved analysis of data on all patients seen in VISN 1 network hospitals who have a lung cancer diagnosis.

It is designed to offer clinical care to veterans, as well as opportunities for the discovery and validation of new cancer biomarkers.

The company said evaluation measures in the programme will allow assessments of how POP is impacting VA cancer patient outcomes.

"POP will focus on newly-diagnosed non-small cell lung cancer patients served by New England Veterans Integrated Service Network."

PGDx chief operating officer Jeffrey Boschwitz said: "We are honoured that the VA’s VISN 1 has selected PGDx to provide targeted DNA profiling for the Precision Oncology Program, and applaud its leadership in this field that is rapidly transforming the treatment of cancer.

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"We specifically designed our CancerSelect panel to have unsurpassed sensitivity and specificity while maintaining its cost-effectiveness, so that it can be available to patients in a range of healthcare settings, including programmes such as POP."

POP will focus on newly-diagnosed non-small cell lung cancer patients served by New England Veterans Integrated Service Network.

CancerSelect’s next-generation sequencing technology helps to identify somatic mutations, focal amplifications and translocations in genes that have the greatest potential to impact treatment decisions.

The company’s bioinformatics pipeline allows CancerSelect to maintain high-sensitivity and specificity at mutant allele frequencies as low as 2%, which is lower than any other test currently available.

PGDx offers advanced cancer genome analyses to oncology researchers, drug developers, clinicians and patients, and it uses advanced genomic methods, deep expertise in cancer biology to identify and characterise genomic alterations in tumours.