Fueled by new cancer therapeutics, last year the annual new molecular and biological entity approval count from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) saw its highest year since 1997. One-third of the novel products approved by the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER) are used to treat cancers of the blood, breast, colon, prostate, skin and thyroid.
Biomarker Bulletin is an occasionally recurring update of news focused on biomarkers aggregated at BiomarkerCommons.org. Biomarkers are physical, functional or biochemical indicators of normal physiological or disease processes. The individualization of disease management — personalized medicine — is dependent on developing biomarkers that promote specific clinical domains, including early detection, risk, diagnosis, prognosis and predicted response to therapy.
- Biomarker Combinations Successfully Discriminate Between Asthma and COPD
Researchers in Australia have identified a panel of four biomarkers that may aid in the diagnosis and management of asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). The study, published in the American Thoracic Society’s American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, found that the biomarkers may be used in different combinations to successfully identify patients with either of the airway diseases.
- Plasma Biomarkers in Liver Cancer Refine Stratification of Patient Risk
According to an Internal Medicine News report, data presented at the 2011 Gastrointestinal Cancers Symposium at the American Society of Clinical Oncology meeting on gastrointestinal cancers in January sponsored by the American Society of Clinical Oncology suggests that a simple blood test may improve on systems conventionally used to estimate prognosis in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma.
- Xention to Characterize Biomarkers for AF Consortium
Cambridge-based biopharmaceutical company Xention announced yesterday that it is a partner in the new multidisciplinary atrial fibrillation research consortium, the European Network for Translational Research in Atrial Fibrillation (EUTRAF). The consortium has been awarded a 12 million euro grant to engage in atrial fibrillation (AF) research.
- Five Metabolite Levels May Improve Risk Prediction for Diabetes
Researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) recently identified five amino acids whose levels indicated increased diabetes risk in a general population. Moreover, the biomarkers could differentiate, among individuals with traditional risk factors such as obesity, those most likely to actually develop diabetes. The findings are published in the journal Nature Medicine.
- Endothelial Microparticles (EMPs) in the Blood Useful for Identifying Early Signs of Emphysema
According to a recent study published in the American Thoracic Society’s American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, small particles in the blood released by cells lining the lungs may help clinicians diagnose emphysema in its earliest stages. The particles, called endothelial microparticles (EMPs), are shed during disease progression as pulmonary capillaries in the lungs are injured and die.