Cancer therapy as we know it is evolving. With many patients not responding or reacting badly to generalised treatment, it is not surprising that demand for more individual treatment is rising.

Personalised medicine, often synonymous with companion diagnostics, in oncology has been increasing globally in recent years, with the fastest growth in the emerging markets of Japan and China, according to GlobalData. In particular, the number of tests conducted for non-small cell lung cancer is expected to increase from 709,000 in 2017 to 1,237,000 in 2023, increasing at a compound annual growth rate of 9.9%, which is primarily driven by the increasing incidence rate and decreasing cost per test.

Additionally, many companies are investing in the growing trend of personalised medicine. On March 13th, Myriad Genetics announced the launch of the EndoPredict test in the US for breast cancer. EndoPredict is a test to determine the 10-year risk of recurrence following cancer treatment based on a patient’s genetic profile, while also enabling physicians to determine which patients may not require chemotherapy.

Tests like EndoPredict are becoming increasingly more common, and are indicative of the vast leaps made in genetics in the past decade. With costs of sequencing rapidly decreasing (indeed, Illumina claims its NovaSeq Series could be capable of sequencing a genome for $100), we have the capability to rapidly expand our understanding of the human genome, making personalized medicine a feasible reality.

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