QIAGEN (formerly DxS Ltd) has established itself as the market leader in the successful co-development of drug-diagnostic solutions with pharmaceutical partners. QIAGEN has a considerable portfolio of over 15 ongoing collaborations with drug giants such as Amgen, AstraZeneca, Bristol-Myers Squibb and ImClone Systems, Pfizer and Boehringer Ingelheim. This presentation will outline the current state of companion diagnostics as a driver of personalized healthcare; investigate the regulatory and commercial hurdles involved in bringing a companion diagnostic to market and the importance of pharma partnering during clinical development as a way to overcome these hurdles, as well as discuss some of the challenges inherent to companion diagnostic partnerships.

Focusing on two of QIAGEN's key experiences with companion diagnostic development for cancer, the presentation will look first at the KRAS story and the challenge of producing the first companion diagnostic of its kind — the TheraScreen®: K-RAS Mutation Kit to predict patient response to metastatic colorectal cancer therapies Vectibix® (Amgen) and Erbitux® (BMS/Imclone Systems) based on the mutation status of the KRAS oncogene. Next, it will examine the importance of another companion diagnostic, the TheraScreen: EGFR29 Mutation Test Kit and its role in facilitating the marketing approval of AstraZeneca's non-small cell lung cancer drug IRESSA® in Europe for EGFR mutation positive patients.

With the global perspective on personalized healthcare shifting and pharma recognizing the importance of independent partners for the co-development of drug and diagnostic, the obstacles to bringing companion diagnostic tests to market have shifted. While victories have been won winning the hearts and minds of drug companies, regulators and physicians in key markets like oncology, we are now fighting for value-based reimbursement so that predictive tests can be made available patients and expand the utility of companion diagnostics to new therapeutic areas. The personalized healthcare landscape is set to continue its rapid evolution to meet these new challenges.

Fourth AACR International Conference on Molecular Diagnostics in Cancer Therapeutic Development– Sep 27-30, 2010; Denver, CO