BioFluidica, has announced the continuation of a highly successful small patient study to replace painful bone marrow biopsies through a simple blood test for Acute Myeloid Leukemia, AML. The larger study sponsored by a $1.5 million Phase 2 Award from Small Business Innovation Research enrolls and tracks 40 patients with AML, a type of cancer of the blood and bone marrow, in a one-year pilot study to search for minimal residual disease, cancer cells undetected after treatment, and for possible onset of relapse following therapy.
Success will be gauged by the ability of BioFluidica's patented Liquid Scan® cartridge technology to detect relapse, as signaled by changes in Circulating Leukemic Cells, CLCs, before cytology testing from the usual bone marrow biopsy.
Rolf Muller, CEO of BioFluidica, states that with BioFluidica's technology, "we are able to program microfluidic chips to isolate any kind of diagnostically relevant cell from blood samples whether from solid tumors or blood cancer. In the case of AML we are detecting complex panels of CLCs to monitor cancer recurrence. The expansion of BioFluidica's technology into the blood-born cancers is added to the clinical validation we have already achieved from 9 other cancers including lung, breast, pancreatic, prostate, and colorectal cancer. The high through-put instrumentation for cell isolation will now be used in clinical trials."
BioFluidica and our technology are highlighted as a "Feature Article" in the February 01, 2018, Vol. 38, No. 3, issue of Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News.
Cancer metastasis causes 90% of all cancer-related deaths. Scientists agree that the metastases occur when cancer cells are shed from the primary tumor, carried by the peripheral blood, and deposited at a distal site to create a new colony. An ability to detect circulating tumor cells, CTCs, or cell-free cancer DNA, cfDNA, in blood or saliva opens possibilities to suspect cancer even before it is visible on radiological images.
BioFluidica is dedicated to commercialization of the microfluidic chips for liquid biopsy biomarkers on the oncology-related aspects of liquid biopsies. "Our goal is to develop a universal technology capable of isolating all three oncological markers: cell-free DNA, exosomes, and CTCs," says Dr. Soper with the University of Kansas, and the inventor of our technology. "But more importantly, the isolated material has to be fully compatible with downstream genetic analysis, which requires high purity isolates."