It's Oncotype DX vs MammaPrint in Europe

Nick Mulcahy

May 08, 2014

Two multigene assays are battling to be most-used in breast cancer patients in Europe, according to a survey of clinicians there.

The assays can help determine the likelihood of benefit from adjuvant chemotherapy in some breast cancer patients.

The Oncotype DX breast cancer assay came in first, with 78% of survey respondents citing its use. MammaPrint came in second, with 34%.

EndoPredict (6%), FEMTELLE (3%), Prosigna (2%), and Mammostrat (1%) were also cited as options.

The participants were all clinicians with at least 5 years of experience treating breast cancer, according to the survey team, led by Matti Aapro, MD,from the Multidisciplinary Oncology Institute in Genolier, Switzerland.

Dr. Aapro reported the survey results at the IMPAKT 2014 Breast Cancer Conference in Brussels.

The purpose of the survey, known as Multidisciplinary Application of Genomics in Clinical Practice (MAGIC), was to find out about the use of adjuvant chemotherapy and genomic tests for early-stage breast cancer patients.

Genomic tests provide information "beyond traditional measures," such as patient age and tumor size and grade, Dr. Aapro explained in a press statement, and "can help physicians and patients make more informed treatment decisions."

More than half of the respondents (55%) reported having used a multigene assay.

A majority (62%) reported using the testing in less than 20% of their hormone-receptor positive, HER2-negative, lymph-node-negative breast cancer patients. In other words, the assays were used in a minority of patients who are routinely treated with a hormone therapy such as tamoxifen because of their hormone-receptor status.

Adjuvant chemotherapy is a judgment call in early-stage disease because it is frequently ineffective, according to survey press materials.

Notably, of the responding clinicians who did not use a multigene assay, 87% said they would like to do so.

These would-be users reported being held back by lack of reimbursement (45%), cost of the testing (44%), lack of availability (39%), absence in guidelines (20%), and lack of evidence (18%).

The survey was conducted online from August 2013 to January 2014.

The survey was supported by a grant from Genomic Health. A number of survey authors report financial ties to Genomic Health.

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