MAY 30, 2019 06:00 AM PDT

Improved Cancer Tracking Through Precision Quantification of Circulating Nucleic Acid Biomarkers

Speakers
  • Chief Scientific Officer, COMBiNATi
    Biography
      Megan Dueck earned her Master of Science degree from UC San Diego in Molecular Pathology in 2005 and completed her PhD in Biological Sciences at UC San Diego in August 2016. From 2005 until 2011, she was a lecturer in the UC Berkeley Bioengineering department receiving awards and NSF funding to develop undergrad curriculum interfacing molecular biology with microfluidics. Megan has over 15 years of experience with microfluidic device and assay design. Currently Megan is a co-founder and CSO for an SF Bay Area biotech hardware company working to bring a revolutionary digital PCR platform to market.

    Abstract:

    Oncologists have many options when tasked with treating a patient’s cancer. Unfortunately, many cancer drugs and therapies come with potentially debilitating side effects. As such, it is essential that a doctor track a patient’s response to therapy and change course as early as possible if the therapy is not effective at eradicating cancer cells.  Precision, personalized tracking of cancer burden is also critical for monitoring patients in remission so that therapy can be restarted the moment the cancer resurfaces.  Digital PCR offers clinicians the necessary tool for absolute quantification and precision tracking of circulating DNA cancer biomarkers. COMBiNATi has developed a novel digital PCR platform consisting of a micro-molded plastic consumable and fully integrated instrument designed to address the specific needs of a routine clinical diagnostic tool.  Using a patient-specific assay we have proven the platform’s ability to precisely track a specific cancer patient’s response to therapy and ultimate transition to complete molecular remission. 

    Learning Objectives: 

    1. What is meant by "liquid biopsy", "precision cancer monitoring" and "personalized medicine"?  
    2. What is digital PCR and how can it be used to track a patient's response to therapy or recurrence?
     


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