Exactis Innovation is a pan-Canadian research network that accelerates biomarker-led clinical and translational research in areas of high-unmet medical need.
Precision Medicine in Cancer Care
The past decade has seen the emergence of precision medicine, a complicated method of cancer treatment in which different molecular variants found in tumours guide oncologists to the use of specific therapies that target the cellular growth triggered by the variants. More than a single mutation or variant likely determines the growth of most cancers, however, and more than one single drug is necessary to gain the dramatic therapeutic benefit we need. The main challenge in expanding precision oncology in Canada is the development and implementation of better, more creative partnerships with the bio-pharmaceutical sector so that Canada’s powerful fundamental and clinical research capability, combined with rapidly-emerging tumour analytic technologies, can be optimally leveraged. While much effort, time, and money have been focused on each component individually, now is the time to establish these new and valuable partnerships for the benefit of Canadian cancer patients — and the Exactis Networks of Centres of Excellence aims to do just this.
Now is the time to establish these new and valuable partnerships for the benefit of Canadian cancer patients — and the Exactis Networks of Centres of Excellence aims to do just this.
POET Partnership Boosts Precision Oncology Opportunities
Targeted treatment has significantly improved outcomes in several advanced cancers. Unfortunately, the precision oncology revolution has yet to impact most cancer patients. Sporadic genomic testing capabilities and delayed approval for coverage of targeted drugs create an uneven national landscape. Most patients’ cancers don’t harbour targetable mutations. Disappointingly, even when accessible, these treatments aren’t curative.
The Precision Oncology and Experimental Therapeutics (POET) program at the University of Calgary has taken on this challenge. It incorporates immune response, inflammatory state, microbiome makeup, and metabolomic milieu into the equation. Fostering a relationship between Exactis and the university has been pivotal: it has generated new genomic and polyomic testing capabilities where there were few before, increasing opportunities for oncologists and patients to participate in precision medicine.
Such capability is simultaneously attracting additional investment from industry and slowing the drain of money paying for those tests outside Canada. The result is more equal access to precision oncology testing across Canada through the disbursement of federal funds. Visit Exactis to learn about PMT and the Exactis clinical research network.