Fluidigm Introduces Immuno-Oncology Gene Expression Assay for Translational and Clinical Research

Advanta Immuno-Oncology Gene Expression Assay enables efficient screening of 170 highly informative genes involved in human checkpoint therapeutic response

SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., July 18, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Fluidigm Corporation (NASDAQ:FLDM) today announced the launch of the Advanta™ Immuno-Oncology Gene Expression Assay, an optimized qPCR assay that enables efficient interrogation of tumor immunobiology using proven Fluidigm® microfluidic technology. Designed for use with the Biomark™ HD system, the Advanta Immuno-Oncology Gene Expression Assay sensitively detects 170 gene expression markers involved in checkpoint therapeutic response from FFPE and fresh frozen tumor samples. With the capability to analyze biomarkers across defined T cell subsets, immune regulation, immune cell fate, cytokines, chemokines and more, this assay can enable translational researchers to accelerate the development of checkpoint immunotherapies and to identify predictive biomarker signatures for therapeutic response.

Tumor gene expression profiling has proven effective in measuring immune response during cancer progression and therapeutic response. Previous approaches using large preconfigured panels containing hundreds of genes or transcriptome analysis, however, are both costly and time-consuming. Large preconfigured panels can also be difficult to customize for specific experimental needs. The Advanta Immuno-Oncology Gene Expression Assay was developed in collaboration with leading researchers from academia and biopharma to provide the right balance of biomarker breadth, assay flexibility and workflow efficiency.

"Sirona Dx specializes in tumor expression profiling of challenging FFPE samples, and we welcomed the opportunity to partner with Fluidigm to offer the Advanta Immuno-Oncology Gene Expression Assay," said Nasry Yassa, CEO of Sirona Dx. "Our pharma clients are universally impressed with the extremely low input requirements and reduced cost compared to other approaches and are now able to screen more of their precious samples."

The Advanta Immuno-Oncology Gene Expression Assay is available as a two-panel set. The first panel includes 91 key markers of tumor immune response that were previously shown in a multicenter international clinical trial to inform tumor progression and checkpoint therapeutic response. The second panel includes 74 additional highly informative immuno-oncology markers and 17 open assay inlets for additional customization. Both panels contain the same five reference genes and can be purchased and used together or separately.

Combined with Fluidigm microfluidics technology, this Advanta assay uniquely offers significant workflow efficiencies over traditional gene expression profiling methods. Each reaction is miniaturized to nanoliter volume and controlled using precise automation to empower accurate and cost-effective qPCR testing across a large dynamic range. Since assay introduction into the microfluidics circuit is under user control, researchers have the flexibility to add or exchange gene assays within the panel to achieve experimental goals.

"Immunotherapeutic approaches that harness the body's own immune system to fight cancer provide great promise to change how cancer is treated and ultimately cured," said Chris Linthwaite, President and CEO of Fluidigm. "We are excited to announce the Advanta Immuno-Oncology Gene Expression Assay as an expansion of our growing portfolio of workflow solutions for the Biomark HD system to empower this great work. With the launch of this new assay, we are pleased to bring high-value innovation to the cancer research community to help advance the future of cancer care."