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CTC Isolation

IsoPic™ uses biomechanical characteristics to capture the CTCs from the blood and does not rely on conventional biomarkers that often miss some of the rare and unpredictable cancer cells. The analysis of blood to find CTCs can be performed on apparently healthy people for early screening for cancer, and on those already afflicted by symptoms of cancer to potentially guide their treatment.

iCellate can with high sensitivity find the rare CTCs in the blood. The instrument IsoPic™ can find 90% of the CTCs in spiked tests with breast cancer, connective tissue cancer and cervical cancer cells.

Circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) are break-down fragments from spontaneously degrading tumor cells that can be found in the blood of many cancer patients.

iCellate provides efficient purification and sequencing of these circulating DNAs from human plasma, as an additional sample type that may complement CTC analysis. From the initial plasma preparation iCellate further isolates and purifies the cell free DNA on magnetic beads. The isolated and purified DNA fragments are ligated into a sequencing library in anticipation of sequencing. The library is checked for purity, correct size, is quantified, and is then ready for sequencing. The DNA sequences are then evaluated for any relevant mutations and therapy options weighed.

Germline DNA refers to the DNA inherited from both parents that becomes incorporated into the DNA of every cell in the body of the offspring. A germline mutation may thus be passed from parent to every cell of the offspring. In hereditary cancer, germline DNA is analyzed (sequenced) to determine if the individual carries one or more inherited mutated genes, and therefore an increased risk of acquiring cancer early. Our DNA acquires additional mutations during our lifetimes. Those mutations are added to those that we may have inherited from our parents, and increases the risk of cancer further.

The genetic information of the tumor cells, or fragments from cells, can potentially provide an excellent tool for diagnosis, monitoring disease progression, predicting response to selected drugs and to identify therapy-resistant cancer at an early stage. Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) analysis can be used for a detailed investigation of the tumor cells’ or fragments’ genetic makeup at the single cell level. This information enables clinical decision-making based on the few available cancer cells isolated by iCellate’s workflow. This approach may therefore help to provide broad access to personalized cancer medicine in the near future to all patients in a comprehensive, sensitive, fast and cost effective manner.

Available clinical or validated preclinical data can be used to continuously match a driver mutation with a certain therapy i.e. predict tumor sensitivity to specific drugs over the course of the treatment. Furthermore, the clinical impact of treatment selections based on the driver mutation panorama will ideally be collected in databases in order to document the impact of informed treatment selection on the clinical outcome, thus providing a tool for incrementally improving treatment decisions.