Thermo Fisher Scientific has introduced a next-generation sequencing (NGS) panel called Oncomine Childhood Cancer Research Assay to enable the study of genetic alterations associated with paediatric and young adult cancers.

Developed in alliance with Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, the Oncomine assay is a combination of specific mutations, gene amplification and fusions.

The comprehensive panel is designed to analyse 203 unique genes from various classes along with 1,700 fusion transcripts in two pools each of DNA and RNA through an NGS workflow.

“Developed in alliance with Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, the Oncomine assay is a combination of specific mutations, gene amplification and fusions.”

It can be used with the Ion Chef System to carry out automated library preparation and amplification, and Ion GeneStudio S5 Systems and the company’s Ion Reporter for performing downstream bioinformatics and reporting.

Thermo Fisher has also established the International Childhood Oncology Network (ICON) involving several academic and clinical researchers.

Members of the global community are set to exchange data, practices and experiment with protocols to advance the understanding of paediatric, childhood and young adult cancers in order to enable better management of these conditions.

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Children’s Hospital Los Angeles Center for Personalized Medicine co-director Timothy Triche said: “The Oncomine Childhood Cancer Research Assay is of particular importance because it is the first designed for all forms of childhood cancers that simultaneously detects RNA gene fusions and DNA mutations, both of which are critical in childhood cancer.

“I am also very excited by the International Childhood Oncology Network, which will allow us and its members to collect data and share our experience in an effort to drive clinical research in childhood cancer.”