ChondroGene Inc. Release: Blood-Based Detection Of Colon And Prostate Cancer Abstracts Presented At American Society of Clinical Oncology Annual Meeting

Published: Jun 07, 2006

TORONTO, June 7 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ - ChondroGene Limited (TSX Venture: CDG - News) announced today that two abstracts were presented at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting that was held in Atlanta this week. The two abstracts presented preliminary results of the Company's work in identifying blood-based biomarkers for the detection of colorectal and prostate cancer. Both abstracts demonstrate the power and flexibility of the Sentinel Principle(TM), ChondroGene's proprietary approach to identify molecular signatures of disease in blood.

The first abstract entitled, "Novel blood biomarker panel detects human colorectal cancer" was authored by ChondroGene scientists and researchers at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China, Lam Wah Ee Hospital, Penang, Malaysia, the 2nd Affiliated Hospital of Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, China and Anhui Medical University, Hefei, China. The abstract reports results from a study that identified gene signatures in whole blood which were then used to identify and characterize a set of biomarkers able to differentiate patients with colorectal cancer from controls.

In the study, 31 blood RNA samples were profiled to identify differentially expressed genes. Quantitative real-time PCR was then used to identify subsets of genes using 115 samples and logistic regression was applied to assess the ability of combinations of specific transcripts to distinguish colorectal cancer from controls. This analysis yielded a combination of five genes that achieved sensitivity of 98% and specificity of 51% in the training set. This five-gene combination was then used in a blinded test of 83 samples, achieving sensitivity of 95% and specificity of 42%, demonstrating an effective blood-based approach for the detection of colorectal cancer.

The second abstract entitled "Blood-based biomarkers for detecting aggressive prostate cancer at time of biopsy" was authored by ChondroGene researchers and collaborators at the University of Toronto. This study identified a set of blood biomarkers that was able to distinguish patients with aggressive forms of prostate cancer from controls.

A two-stage study was conducted, with the first stage focussing on gene discovery among 47 patients who underwent a prostate biopsy for prostate cancer. Included in the study were 16 patients (cases) diagnosed with aggressive forms of prostate cancer defined as having a histologic grade of Gleason Score 7 or more, and 31 patients with no evidence of cancer at biopsy (controls). The second stage was a validation study on samples from 108 patients using quantitative real time PCR methods. Logistic regression was used to assess the ability of combinations of specific transcripts to distinguish cancers from controls.

A combination of four genes resulting from the second stage of the investigation discriminated the cases of aggressive forms of prostate cancer from controls with a sensitivity of 90% and specificity of 53%. The performance of PSA (4 ng/mL cut-off) in the same 108 sample set distinguished the two groups with 91% sensitivity and 13% specificity. When used in combination with PSA however, these 4 blood-based biomarkers were synergistic, achieving sensitivity of 90% and specificity of 70%, demonstrating improved overall accuracy in identifying patients with aggressive prostate cancer at biopsy.

"We are pleased to have presented our initial results in colorectal and prostate cancer detection at this conference. The annual ASCO meeting is an important international conference where many new discoveries and innovations for cancer diagnosis and treatment are first disclosed," stated K. Wayne Marshall, MD, PhD, President and CEO of ChondroGene. "The results presented at ASCO were preliminary data. Since submitting the abstracts, we have made substantial further progress. Our current efforts are focussed on the development and continued optimization of design and performance parameters for our lead product, ColonSentry(TM), for the detection of colorectal cancer from a simple blood sample."

About ASCO ----------

The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) is the world's leading professional organization representing physicians who treat people with cancer. ASCO's members set the standard for patient care worldwide, and lead the fight for more effective cancer treatments, increased funding for clinical and translational research, and cures for the many different cancers that strike millions of people around the world every year. For more information go to

About ChondroGene


ChondroGene is focussed on the application of functional genomics to enable early diagnosis and personalized therapeutic intervention based on disease-specific biomarkers. The company has developed a novel approach, the Sentinel Principle(TM), to detect and stage virtually any disease or medical condition from a simple blood sample. ChondroGene is currently applying the Sentinel Principle in major areas with unmet clinical needs such as cancer, arthritis, cardiovascular disease and neurological disorders. For more information on ChondroGene, visit

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Source: ChondroGene Limited

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