Thermo Fisher Scientific, Carlsbad, Calif, has opened a call for submissions for its Oncomine Clinical Research Grant program to support clinical research. The program aims to assist educational and independent research projects that exhibit excellence in molecular profiling to advance clinical outcomes and support healthcare providers serving cancer patients.

After initially launching the grant program in 2020, Thermo Fisher is now calling for proposals dedicated to liquid biopsy research. Each proposal may receive an award worth up to $200,000 in reagents and funding. 

“Increased knowledge of the molecular alterations that drive cancer growth continues to improve cancer treatment and outcomes. Adoption of liquid biopsies for routine testing could further improve patient management by providing clinicians with valuable information on therapy response and disease relapse, possibly reducing the need for invasive procedures,” says Luca Quagliata, PhD, BCMAS, global head of medical affairs for clinical next-generation sequencing (NGS) and oncology at Thermo Fisher Scientific. “We are excited to champion the diligent work of global research teams advancing this important area of study.

“In 2019 when we launched the Ion Torrent Genexus System, the first NGS platform with a fully automated specimen-to-report workflow that delivers results in a single day, we also introduced the Oncomine Precision Assay to enable comprehensive genomic profiling from both solid tissue and liquid biopsy with a single assay,” Quagliata adds. “In the future, we believe the Genexus System will play a key role in driving wide-spread utilization of NGS, including liquid biopsy testing, by enabling clinicians to quickly derive actionable insights from patient samples.”

The Ion Torrent Genexus System and the Oncomine Precision Assay are for research use only and are not for use for diagnostic purposes.

“The Genexus System has allowed us to successfully bring comprehensive genomic testing to our community, where access to precision medicine treatments and testing was previously extremely limited. Having this resource available within our facility has been a game-changer for our patients and providers,” says Brandon Sheffield, MD, pathologist at the William Osler Health System (Osler), a multi-site hospital in North Toronto and Brampton, Ontario.

As a recipient of the 2020 Oncomine Clinical Research Grant, Osler is examining the clinical effect of rapid in-house comprehensive genomic profiling in a community oncology practice with the aim of creating a funding model for other health systems that may benefit from this technology. 

Grant proposals are being accepted through March 29, 2021. Proposals will be considered based on scientific merit and evaluated by independent and internationally recognized experts.

Read more about the Oncomine Clinical Research Grant from Thermo Fisher Scientific