Genomic Health Inc. said Tuesday that a study shows its Oncotype DX diagnostic test can help physicians determine whether or not patients with a non-invasive type of breast cancer are at risk for a more dangerous type of the disease.
Genomic Health is studying the Oncotype DX test in ductal carcinoma in situ, a type of milk duct growth that is not invasive and is not life-threatening. However, ductal carcinoma in situ, or DCIS, is a risk factor for developing invasive cancers later on, and Genomic Health said the test was able to predict recurrences of DCIS, which could allow physicians to determine which patients can be treated with surgery and chemotherapy, and which ones would be candidates for radiation therapy to prevent a recurrence.
The company said it intends to make Oncotype DX DCIS test available by the end of 2011. Genomic Health and its partner, the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group, plan to submit data for presentation at a breast cancer symposium in December.
About 45,000 cases of DCIS are diagnosed in the U.S. each year. Genomic Health said about 20 to 25 percent of patients who are treated with surgery and chemotherapy have a recurrence within 10 years. The company said radiation reduces the chances of recurrence but has not been shown to extend survival.
Genomic Health markets other versions of the Oncotype DX test for use in breast and colon cancer. In midday trading, the company's shares rose 34 cents to $25.77.