The gist: The Signature Program lets people with different kinds of cancer across the U.S. access new, promising drugs that are still in the testing phase (i.e. they cannot yet be simply prescribed by oncologists). The program matches patients to different treatments based on the distinct genetic changes found in each patient’s tumor. According to this article, Signature is enrolling an “encouraging” amount of patients. And, it may be driving more oncologists at community healthcare settings to use molecular testing to help patients choose their best treatment options. Learn more about Signature at our Need to Know blog.
“Participation in Novartis’ biomarker based signal-finding trials, known as the Signature Program, is progressing at an encouraging pace, according to researchers involved in the effort.
“Novartis last year launched the Signature Program, a drug trial series in which patients are enrolled into mutation-specific study protocols that are tissue agnostic. Currently, cancer drugs are studied and approved according to a specific tumor site or histology (ie. breast cancer, lung cancer, etc). However, with advances in genomic knowledge, life sciences experts have often discussed future scenarios where therapies will be studied in and approved for the specific molecular pathways they interrogate. Novartis is taking the first step toward exploring such a vision through the Signature Program.”