Chicago, April 12 – Tempus, a leading technology company advancing precision medicine through the collection and analysis of molecular and clinical data announced a new collaboration with the Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah (HCI) aimed at improving outcomes for patients diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.
While personalized treatment approaches have led to improvements in treatment of other cancer types, the genetic mutations commonly seen in pancreatic cancer do not yet have “druggable” targets. Collecting molecular and clinical data for patients diagnosed with pancreatic cancer will allow researchers to identify patterns associated to the prognosis, diagnosis, targetability and side effects of the disease. Pancreatic cancer is currently the third leading cause of cancer-related death in the United States and has a five-year survival rate of nine percent.
As part of the collaboration, Tempus will perform genomic sequencing and clinical data structuring for a cohort of patients diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Utilizing machine learning and advanced bioinformatics, Tempus will help researchers analyze these newly amassed data sets in a search for potentially relevant patterns for patients that are unlikely to respond to conventional therapies.
“In the last few years, the five-year survival rate for pancreatic cancer patients has increased from six to nine percent, which is important and encouraging progress that has saved many lives,” said Matthew A. Firpo, PhD, co-Director of the pancreas cancer research program at the Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah. “As we look ahead, there is an urgent need to learn as much as we can about the disease and identify new treatments that can ultimately improve outcomes.”
“The collection of clinical and molecular data is key to efforts to understand cancer,” said Eric Lefkofsky, Founder and CEO at Tempus. “As we continue to work hand-in-hand with hospital systems such as HCI to grow a pancreatic cancer focused database, we hope to uncover patterns of clinical significance that will benefit patients diagnosed with this often lethal disease.”
Tempus is currently working with a number of academic centers and hospital systems on pancreatic cancer related research initiatives, including with the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, NYU School of Medicineand Penn’s Abramson Cancer Center. In addition, Tempus continues to work with clinicians across the country that are treating patients diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.