A Real-Time Look at What's Happening in Patients' CellsMetabolite Profiling
The need for improved cancer diagnostics is compelling. Yet molecular diagnostics employing DNA, RNA, and proteins have not delivered with actionable clinical tests.
The answer may lie with metabolomics, which is the study of the unique chemical fingerprints that specific cellular processes—processes like cancer—leave behind. While mRNA, gene expression data, and proteomic analyses do not tell the whole story of what might be happening in a cell, metabolite profiling can give an instantaneous snapshot of the physiology of a cell.
Metabolite profiling is part of an emerging field of chemical and clinical analysis that identifies and measures changes in important small molecule metabolites—also known as biomarkers—found in blood, urine, saliva, tears, and spinal fluid. Matrix-Bio is working to turn patented metabolite profiling methods into specific diagnostic tests so that through a simple blood test it will be possible to detect cancer in its very early stages with a high degree of accuracy. It also can be used to monitor the recurrence of disease or how a patient is responding to treatment. Metabolite profiling offers great promise to physicians and patients.
Matrix-Bio’s metabolite profiling-based cancer diagnostic tests using the VeraMarker™ technology platform offer these advantages over molecular and traditional diagnostic tests:
- Cancer cell metabolism is distinct from normal, healthy cells.
- Metabolite profiling measures cell function more effectively than DNA, RNA and proteins, offering a real-time assessment of biological function at the cellular level.
- Metabolite profiles are very sensitive and specific to cancer, which enables early detection, often when patients are asymptomatic and conventional biomarkers and imaging modalities are not helpful.
- Metabolite profiling is applicable for cancer screening, diagnosis, staging, prediction of outcomes, and monitoring response to therapy and therapy toxicity.
- Metabolite profiling offers great potential for personalizing treatment to individual patients.
- Metabolite profiling relies on a simple blood draw, making it easy to implement, less stressful for patients and potentially less costly than current tests.
Metabolite profiling is the basis of Matrix-Bio’s liver cancer diagnostic test currently in development.