AnchorDx develops a new liquid biopsy diagnostic model for early detection of breast cancer, improving prognosis.
In 2020, breast cancer was ranked the most common cancer by the World Health Organization, with 2.26 million new cases. The early diagnosis of breast cancer can help improve prognosis, and though mammograms have been employed in breast cancer screening, its sensitivity varies from approximately 68 to 93 per cent, depending on practitioner experience, patient age, and breast density, among other factors. Hence, there is a need to develop more accurate screening methods.
AnchorDx, a world-leading developer of cancer screening and early detection solutions, together with renowned experts from a top-tier hospital in China, jointly published an article entitled "Circulating cell-free DNA-based methylation patterns for breast cancer diagnosis" in well-known journal, npj Breast Cancer. The new diagnostic model is based on circulating cell-free DNA-based (cfDNA) methylation patterns. It can serve as a reliable approach for the early diagnosis of breast cancer and is expected to compensate for the deficiency of mammography.
In order to compensate for the defects of mammography, AnchorDx conducted cfDNA methylation profiling to develop and validate a liquid biopsy-based breast cancer diagnostic test. They derived a specific panel of markers based on computational analysis of the DNA methylation profiles from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA). Through training and validation set, they developed a diagnostic prediction model with 26 markers. The model yielded a sensitivity of 94.79 per cent and a specificity of 98.70 per cent for differentiating malignant disease from normal lesions, and had better diagnostic power than that of using mammography. As a result, the cfDNA methylation model for breast cancer diagnosis showed increased performance over mammography.
As a leading biotechnology company developing high-throughput methylation sequencing of ctDNA for early cancer diagnosis, AnchorDx will collect more case and testing data for validating the model. The hope is this model will help lower breast cancer risk, especially for women who are at high risk in China in the near future.