Personalization of Cancer Treatment Poised to Go Mainstream

Over the past years, there has been a large influx of research related to the personalization of cancer treatment. As the fruits of these efforts finally begin to be harvested, Kalorama Information – a market research firm – suggests that personalized cancer care is set to become a standard method of cancer treatment.

In a recent biennial review, “The Worldwide Market for Cancer Diagnostics,” Kalorama announced that they expect the cancer testing market for equipment used to match cancer therapies to a specific patient will reach $90 million by 2014.

The estimation comes on the heels of the FDA approval for some of the first commercially available pharmacodiagnostic testing procedures. Presently, there are five such tests that have passed trial phases to become accepted methods for improving cancer treatment. These tests are used to match patients to such drugs as Erbitux, Gleevec, Herceptin and Tarceva.

Perhaps the greatest early success of personalized cancer care is the breast cancer test known as Oncotype DX. This test has quickly become the norm in diagnosing breast cancer and is used extensively to determine the best course of treatment. In use since 2004, the test has proven effective in predicting the potential for chemotherapy treatments to positively affect a cancerous tumor.

In addition to these FDA-approved tests, several other pharmacodiagnostic procedures are currently in the research pipeline and expected to be approved for public use in the coming years. As interest and growth in the sub-sector of personalized medicine continues to find success, Kalorama predicts growth levels of research on the subject to exceed that of the industry as a whole.

Specifically, according to Shara Rosen, senior diagnostic analyst at Kalorama, “We expect pharmacogenomics, predisposition diagnostics and molecular diagnostics (PGx) to show 25 to 30 percent annual growth over the next five to ten years.” Hopefully, this growth will lead to improved cancer treatments and survival rates.