Bengaluru, April 11 (PTI) Global genomic profiling and bioinformatics company, Strand Life Sciences, today announced the launch of their Liquid Biopsy test portfolio ‘STRAND LB’ that provides “highly sensitive” detection of tumor traces from a simple blood draw.

The tool can provide early and precise indication of tumor presence, cancer recurrence, and response to therapy compared to any other method used in the medical industry, the company officials said.

They said the Strand LB tests are an outcome of the collaboration between Scientific teams of Strand and Mazumdar Shaw Center for Translational Research (MSCTR), which worked together to develop advanced tests which were validated by clinicians at the Mazumdar Shaw Medical Center (MSMC).

Innovations like Liquid Biopsy are huge breakthroughs in cancer detection and management.

India needs such pioneering innovation in healthcare to foster early detection which can be a great help in bringing down the non-communicable disease (NCD) burden that our country is facing today, Biocon CMD Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw said.

“What Strand and MSCTR have done in coming out with this Liquid Biopsy is a very very difficult feat to accomplish. It is something that takes a lot of intellectual wisdom, a lot of innovation and a lot of evaluation, because validation is extremely important,” she told reporters here.

Officials from Strand said typically, tumors are assessed through invasive tumor biopsies or through radioactive scans, while this latest technique allows earlier assessment with minimal discomfort to patients.

“Liquid biopsy is a paradigm shift that involves a minimally-invasive procedure, no radioactive scans, and can detect tumor DNA traces from a simple blood draw.However, detecting tumor DNA requires a highly sensitive test capable of detecting 1 molecule in a 1000,” Strand Life Sciences CMD Dr Vijay Chandru said.

He said their study on patients spanning a wide variety of cancer types shows that STRAND LB could detect tumor DNA traces in as many as 35 per cent of patients with early-stage cancer, going up to 70-90 per cent in patients with locally advanced or metastatic cancer.

Officials said non-invasive Liquid Biopsy tests will advance the field of cancer diagnostics, as they offer ultra-sensitive detection of mutations which will help in early detection and intervention.

To reflect the collaboration these tests will be made available and offered to all patients at MSMC.

Pointing out that solid tumors developing on an internal organ or deep within the body are hard to access, Heme-Oncologist & Clinical Director, MazumdarShaw Medical Centre Dr Sharat Damodar said a liquid biopsy test requires only a simple blood draw.

He said “The technique helps to create personalized cancer treatment plans for each patient.

Calling it a personalized monitoring product across variety of cancer types, Strand Life Sciences CEO Dr Ramesh Hariharan said the biggest challenge with creating STRAND LB is to cater to all the needs, while providing high sensitivity, strong validation, and low cost.

As Hariharan said the cost will be in the Rs 20,000 range in response to a question, Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw said a test in the US costs a few lakhs.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.