A biopsy is a critical procedure for patients with cancer—providing crucial information on diagnosis, prognosis, and prediction of response or resistance to treatment. In some cancer types, like non– small-cell lung cancer, it is difficult to resect enough tissue from the biopsy for biomarker testing, due to the health of the patient or the location of the tumour.
Liquid biopsy offers an alternative sample type that can compliment or overcome the barriers associated with obtaining tumour tissue samples. It allows physicians and labs to use plasma from the patient, when obtaining tumour tissue is not available or poses a risk to the patient.
The blood draw is a non-invasive procedure for patients and a repeatable testing method for labs and physicians. Liquid biopsy has incredible potential to transform cancer patient testing and management, and is quickly becoming a compliment to the common tissue biopsy technique.
Roche is at the forefront of innovating liquid biopsy in managing lung cancer patients. Roche has developed a test (the cobas® EGFR Mutation Test v2) that can be used on both tissue and cfDNA in plasma to identify the mutations in the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) gene associated with NSCLC. As promising research into liquid biopsy continues, Roche remains committed to directly translating that research into more accurate diagnostics and improved patient care.