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Mutational Signatures: Whole Cancer Genome Interpretation Platform

The Opportunity: 

CRUK is seeking a partner to collaborate on a proprietary technology better able to identify mutational patterns in cancer genomes for patient stratification. Whole genome sequencing (WGS) of cancers is expected to become standard of care in oncology in the next 3-5 years. Dr Serena Nik-Zainal, a leader in the field, has developed proprietary methods and algorithms able to analyse the mutations in a cancer genome to identify patterns (signatures) that reflect the underlying biology of the tumour, providing a deeper insight into the likely tumour phenotype than current gene panel approaches. These signatures can be used to stratify patients for therapy, and our most advanced test (HRDetect) identifies a larger population of patients with homologous recombination defects suitable for PARP inhibitor therapy than current BRCA sequencing/gene panel approaches. The signature technology is a platform; a panel of additional algorithms are being developed to identify patients suitable for additional agents/drug classes. Interpretation is the biggest challenge to routine WGS uptake by clinicians, and our platform offers a route to provide actionable clinical reports to clinicians to drive therapeutic selection/use such that therapeutic strategy becomes a holistic, WGS-driven assessment, rather than tissue of origin or single gene mutation-based approaches.

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