Source BioScience, a provider of services to the life science research, pharma biotech and healthcare sectors, is now set to provide a companion diagnostic testing service for stomach cancer patients in the UK.

Source BioScience claimed that it is the first reference centre in the UK to provide validated HER2 status testing as a companion diagnostic for possible Herceptin (trastuzumab) therapy for stomach cancer patients.

This will allow clinicians to assess whether patients with metastatic stomach cancer have HER2 positive tumours and thereby determine which patients may benefit from treatment with Roche’s Herceptin therapy and which patients definitely will not. This understanding will help clinicians determine the most appropriate therapy regime for stomach cancer patients.

Source BioScience said that the service will be conducted from its laboratories in Nottingham, UK. Each sample will undergo full pathology review prior to testing, which will enable the tumour status to be determined; ensure that only tumour tissue is analysed and will guarantee the highest quality of diagnostic analysis and reporting. Results will be returned to the clinicians within five working days.

Source BioScience continues to explore avenues to grow its companion diagnostic offering to parallel the growing demand for targeted therapies. Earlier this year Source BioScience signed an agreement with another pharmaceutical company to provide genetic testing for lung cancer patients.

Nick Ash, managing director at Source BioScience, said: “We are delighted to become the first validated laboratory in the UK to provide this type of companion diagnostic testing for Herceptin treatment in stomach cancer.

“It is our strategy to expand the range of diagnostic tests we provide and migrate our extensive experience in genetic analysis into diagnostic testing for healthcare. To support this we maintain first class laboratory accreditations including Clinical Pathology Accreditation (‘CPA’) for our diagnostic testing.

“Increasing demand for targeted therapies to improve treatment success and reduce costs is generating greater demand for companion diagnostics to accompany those therapies.”