Cancer-focused genetic testing services provider NeoGenomics has announced the US launch of its fluorescent in situ hybridisation (FISH) test, designed for monitoring patients with Barrett’s Esophagus (BE).

Using the brushings samples collected from a larger area of the esophagus, the NeoSITE Barrett’s Esophagus FISH assay detects the presence of esophageal cancer or high-grade dysplasia and enables pathologists to make more informed treatment decisions.

A trial conducted on the assay showed initial sensitivity of 86% and specificity of 67%, when the company’s proprietary algorithms were used to assist with interpreting the FISH results.

In addition, sensitivity and specificity levels were even higher when brushing samples were obtained from nodules rather than pan-brushing, according to the company.

NeoGenomics research and development director and chief medical officer Dr Maher Albitar said improving surveillance in BE patients results in better and potentially earlier treatment for those patients who are likely to progress to esophageal cancer.

“Our unique approach of performing FISH testing on brushing samples provides a reliable and an objective means of detecting high grade dysplasia and cancer,” Albitar said.

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“We believe it will enable a major step forward in BE surveillance programmes as it allows clinicians to more easily and frequently tests their BE patients and track quantitative findings over the monitoring period.”

NeoGenomics chairman and CEO Douglas VanOort said; “This extensive development effort is evidence of our commitment to offer highly innovative molecular and genetic tests to support pathologists and clinicians, and to improve patient care.”