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The company will drop the six treatment prediction genes from the test it hopes to start selling early next year, said Genomic Health's chief medical officer, Steve Shak. A price has not been set for the new test, but the breast cancer one costs $3,820.
That's pricey, but many insurers pay it because it can help avoid even costlier chemo, which can run $40,000 to $50,000 for six months for a colon cancer patient, doctors said.
Study results were released Thursday by the American Society of Clinical Oncology and will be presented at the group's annual meeting later this month.
Kerr said researchers plan more work to try to refine the test into a better predictor.
"It is a first step," said Dr. Howard Hochster, colon cancer chief at New York University and a member of the oncology group's program committee that chose the study for presentation at the meeting.
"Perhaps it's going to be most helpful in saying who does not need chemotherapy," he said.
On the Net:
Oncology group: http://www.asco.org/
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