A major challenge in this population is going back and retesting for known or new genomic alterations, agreed ASCO President Bruce E. Johnson, MD, FASCO. “At our upcoming meeting, we are going to hear about RET, which may end up as a target and may therefore need to be tested for.”
Recently, oncologists have a new attractive option of billing for NGS panels rather than for single gene tests, he noted.
“This study really shows that by doing all the testing at the same time, you can both get results back more quickly as well as get information,” said Dr. Johnson, professor of medicine at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and a leader of the Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center Lung Cancer Program, Boston. “This study looked at an NGS panel of eight genes, but most of the NGS panels contain somewhere between 50 and 400 genes, so you get a lot more information with this at a cost that’s competitive or less. So this will be welcome news to people who are ordering these gene panels.”