Lexent Bio Announces Use of its Liquid Biopsy Assay, Confera Dx, in a Peer-Reviewed Paper Published in the Journal Molecular Cancer Therapeutics

SAN FRANCISCO, May 14, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Lexent Bio, Inc., a precision oncology company developing novel liquid biopsy systems, today announced the use of its blood-based whole genome assay, Confera™ Dx, in a proof of concept paper titled “Early assessment of molecular progression and response by whole-genome circulating tumor DNA in advanced solid tumors”, published in Molecular Cancer Therapeutics. The paper describes results in a prospective observational cohort using Confera Dx to assess treatment response in advanced stage solid tumor patients early in the treatment course, within the first weeks after the start of treatment. Dr. Young Kwang Chae, Associate Professor of Medicine and Co-Director of Developmental Therapeutics at Lurie Cancer Center of Northwestern University served as principal investigator for this study.

Accurate and timely assessment of response to treatment is critical in optimally managing disease in patients with advanced-stage tumors.  “We have significant room to improve in treatment response monitoring in terms of the time it takes to understand whether a treatment is working, as well as resolving ambiguity from current methods like imaging,” states Dr. Chae. One of the promising results noted in patients receiving immune checkpoint inhibitors is that within 3-4 weeks of starting treatment, the assay was able to determine who is and is not benefiting from immunotherapy.

This research demonstrates how a blood-based treatment monitoring assay can rapidly assess the efficacy of systemic treatment for individuals with late-stage disease. With results obtained within the first weeks of treatment, patients whose tumors have experienced “biological progression” could avoid incurring the opportunity cost of continuing on ineffective therapy for weeks or months, and switch to a promising alternative approach, improving their odds of a successful outcome. Broad application is enabled by the apparent utility of this assay across most solid tumors, without regard for the systemic therapy being assessed.

“Once assay performance is confirmed in additional studies, Confera Dx will be an invaluable tool for healthcare providers and patients to help them guide their treatment course quickly and accurately,” noted Dr. Haluk Tezcan, Chief Medical Officer at Lexent Bio.

With a faster, more accurate understanding of tumor response, clinicians will be able to quickly identify patient populations that do or do not significantly benefit from specific treatments, accelerating the existing feedback loop. Given the lower cost and practicality of a simple blood draw, the standard of care is poised to incorporate molecular response monitoring in the years ahead. Further, molecular response monitoring will open the door to novel trial designs, expand understanding of cancer biology throughout the course of the disease, and should substantially improve the efficiency of R&D programs for new anti-cancer treatments.

Since data collection for this publication, the Confera Dx assay has further evolved, with improvements in sensitivity. Additional studies are planned for initiation within the next 6 months.

About Lexent Bio
Lexent Bio is a precision oncology company. The company works to shrink cancer’s role in our lives, first by helping patients and clinicians make better treatment decisions, faster. The Lexent Bio team hails from clinical, scientific, engineering, computer science, and business backgrounds, and share a passion for changing the way we understand and treat cancer. The company is taking on some of the hardest problems at the intersection of unexplored cancer biology, data science, and clinical medicine. The Confera™ Dx Assay system is the company’s first product to move into commercialization.


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