BOULDER, Colo., April 30, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — New data presented at the American College of Medical Quality (ACMQ) 2018 conference (Medical Quality 2018) demonstrate that a blood-based proteomic test reliably assesses individual patient prognosis to inform treatment decisions and reduce costs associated with overtreatment in lung cancer. The Biodesix VeriStrat® test provided objective prognostic information that altered physicians’ treatment decisions, independent of patient performance status.
“In the absence of objective prognostic information, patients and physicians often will opt to continue treating lung cancer with systemic medications,” said David Brunel, chief executive officer of Biodesix. “Knowing that for some patients, benefit from these medications is unlikely, patients and their healthcare team who are armed with this information may opt instead to focus on improving quality of life. These prognostic conversations and any alternative, shared treatment strategies can have many benefits for patients, their families, physicians and the healthcare system.”
The VeriStrat test is intended to help guide treatment decisions for patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). VeriStrat classifies patients into two categories, “VS Good” and “VS Poor.” Patients classified as VS Good have a favorable prognosis and benefit from receiving active treatment, whereas patients classified as VS Poor have a less favorable prognosis and may not derive typical benefit from standard of care therapies.
In patients with a poor performance status, VeriStrat results can impact the decision to pursue treatment for patients classified as VS Good, as well as the decision to refer patients with VS Poor test results to alternative treatment strategies, including BSC. Optimizing BSC and avoiding overtreatment creates an expected pharmaceutical expenditure savings of $955 per patient within the first 30 days of treatment.
As part of the ongoing prospective INSIGHT observational trial, physicians provided treatment recommendations prior to VeriStrat testing and actual treatment selections after receipt of VeriStrat results for NSCLC patients. At Medical Quality 2018, Biodesix researchers presented a subgroup analysis that evaluated the impact of VeriStrat test results on treatment decisions for 151 patients with Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG) performance status scores of 2 to 4 at time of study entry. This subgroup was chosen because these patients are more impacted by their disease and have poorer daily functioning scores than patients with ECOG scores of 0 to 1.
In this subgroup, VeriStrat testing classified 58 percent of patients as VS Good and 42 percent as VS Poor. As expected, there was a significant difference in treatment plans, with a smaller portion of VS Good patients referred to BSC than VS Poor patients (9 percent and 23 percent, respectively, p=0.027). VeriStrat remained a significant predictor of referral to BSC regardless of ECOG status in a multivariate analysis.
In the cohort of patients with ECOG scores of 3 to 4 (i.e., those with the poorest performance status), the difference in treatment plans was larger: 9 percent of VS Good as opposed to 58 percent of VS Poor patients were referred to BSC (p=0.041).
“VeriStrat results can impact the frequency of follow-up, clinical trial enrollment, as well as the degree or timing of supportive and palliative services offered,” said Brunel. “This study supports the use of VeriStrat as a valuable prognostic tool independent of performance status, helping to inform physician and patient conversations, optimizing timing of palliative care and decreasing overtreatment when possible.”
Biodesix is a molecular diagnostics company advancing the development of innovative, multi-omic blood tests in oncology to enable precision medicine. Biodesix discovers, develops and commercializes multivariate protein and genomic liquid biopsy tests, including the GeneStrat® and VeriStrat® tests, that deliver results within 72 hours. The company is changing the standard of care by providing physicians with diagnostic tests and with the Biodesix Lung Reflex™ testing strategy, for better therapeutic guidance, more accurate prognosis and enhanced disease monitoring to improve patient outcomes. At the forefront of personalized medicine, Biodesix is developing new tests to identify patients who may benefit from immunotherapies. In addition to developing novel diagnostics independently, the company partners with biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies to develop companion diagnostics for use with therapeutic agents.