Study Shows Biocept’s Switch-Blocker Technology Enhances Performance of Conventional PCR-Based Liquid Biopsy Assays in Detecting Rare Cancer Mutations
Abstract published in the
Biocept’s proprietary Switch-Blocker technology enriches oncogenic mutations of interest while suppressing wild-type (normal) DNA, resulting in ultra-high sensitivity, specificity and accuracy. In this study, Switch-Blockers were combined with conventional real-time PCR and droplet digital PCR (ddPCR) assays.
“Our quantitative Switch-Blocker technology demonstrates an unprecedented ability to find and distinguish extremely rare genetic events—even in blood that contains mostly DNA from normal white blood cells,” said
Results showed that the addition of Switch-Blockers increased the sensitivity of allele-specific primer assays by more than 200 times, from about 1% minor allele frequency (MAF) to better than 0.01%. The sensitivity of multiplex competitive allele-specific TaqMan assays, commonly used with PCR amplification, were increased greater than 1,000 times, from about 10% MAF to 0.01% or better. The ability to significantly increase the sensitivity of conventional mutation assays using Switch-Blocker technology is critical for helping to find rare genetic events in a wide range of applications, including solid tumor cancers, where a majority of biomarkers in blood occur at less than 1% MAF.
The abstract (#TT33), titled “The Use of Switch-Blocker Probes for the Ultra-High Sensitivity of Detection of Rare Genetic Events Using Conventional Real-Time and Droplet Digital PCR Assays,” can be accessed here.
About Switch-Blocker Technology
Biocept’s proprietary Switch-Blocker platform is the basis for the company’s Target Selector™ assays and can be used with tissue, blood and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) samples. The technology enables industry-leading sensitivity for the detection of mutations/variants from circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA). It has been validated to 0.05% minor allele frequency in blood, which provides significant advantages for identifying actionable cancer biomarkers and assessing therapeutic tumor response. Switch-Blockers enhance the performance and specificity of the PCR method, the most widely used amplification approach for clinical diagnostic applications and can be customized to aid in biopharmaceutical research for the development of targeted therapies for cancer. Switch-Blocker technology also has been validated and found to be highly sensitive, quantitative and reproducible in detecting the presence of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19 infections.
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