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Noble Hospital Comprehensive Breast Program in Massachusetts Pioneers Breast Cancer Risk Assessment

Monday, January 14, 2013 10:16 AM


Local Physician One of the First in Nation to Use New Breast Cancer Predictive Risk Test

SPRINGFIELD, Mass., Jan. 14, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Dr. Steven Schonholz, Director of the Comprehensive Breast Program at Noble Hospital, is one of the first physicians in the nation to make the BREVAGen™ predictive risk test available to his patients. Clinically validated, BREVAGen is the latest advance in assessing a woman's unique risk of developing non-familial or sporadic breast cancer.

"One of my interests is developing ways to improve the practice of medicine and ultimately provide personalized care for my patients," said Dr. Steven Schonholz of Noble Hosptial. "BREVAGen allows me to assess each of my patients' personal risk of developing breast cancer. Having this knowledge provides me with the ability to discuss breast cancer risk-reduction strategies, including more frequent or varied screening and treatment options, to help women be more proactive and as in control of their risk for breast cancer as they can be."

BREVAGen is a clinically validated predictive risk test that more accurately identifies a woman's unique risk of developing sporadic, estrogen-positive breast cancer. BREVAGen examines a woman's clinical risk factors, such as their lifetime exposure to estrogen, combined with scientifically validated markers to determine each patient's personalized five-year and lifetime risk of developing breast cancer.1 BREVAGen is supplied by Phenogen Sciences, a subsidiary of Genetic Technologies Limited (Nasdaq:GENE). For more information about Noble Hospital's use of BREVAGen, contact Allison Gearing-Kalill at (413) 568-2811 x5573.

How BREVAGen Works

The BREVAGen predictive risk test is administered in a physician's office using a simple, non-invasive "oral-swab". Following analysis in a CLIA-certified laboratory, physicians receive a comprehensive genetic risk prediction report to review with the patient. The patient's risk of breast cancer is calculated by combining their relative risk score from seven genetic markers, called SNPs (single nucleotide polymorphisms), with factors that comprise the patient's clinical and reproductive history including current age, age at menarche, age at live first birth and race/ethnicity.

The BREVAGen test provides five-year and lifetime predictive risk assessments to more accurately evaluate the patient's risk for developing sporadic breast cancer, regardless of family history or previous indeterminate test results.

Clinically Validated

BREVAGen was proven superior in determining breast cancer risk compared to Gail score alone.1 Utilizing data from the U.S. Women's Health Initiative (WHI) Clinical Trial, 3,300 women underwent breast cancer assessment utilizing the BREVAGen test. Of those 3,300 women, 1,664 were diagnosed with breast cancer and 1,636 were in the breast cancer-free control group. BREVAGen test results support current American Cancer Society (ACS) [www.cancer.org], American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) [www.asco.org] and The National Comprehensive Care Network (NCCN) [www.nccn.org] guidelines for prevention and early detection of breast cancer.2, 3

About The Comprehensive Breast Program at Noble Hospital

The Comprehensive Breast Program at Noble Hospital, a 97 bed community-based hospital and health center located in Westfield, Massachusetts, provides women of all ages with a full range of diagnostic and treatment options for breast-related care. The employees of Noble Hospital are committed to a CARES philosophy – treating the community with Compassion, Accountability, Respect, Excellence, and Satisfaction. The Program utilizes the latest diagnostic technologies and procedures from a single, easy to access location. Services include imaging, diagnosis, surgical and non-surgical treatments, breast reconstruction, and medical oncology. These services are designed to assist a woman from initial symptoms or abnormalities, through the entire treatment process. Noble Hospital has achieved the highest overall patient satisfaction scores in the Pioneer Valley region according to HCAHPS/Press Ganey inpatient satisfaction survey data for the last year. To make an appointment, please call (413) 572-6070. Additional information can also be found at www.NobleHospital.org.

About Phenogen Sciences

Phenogen Sciences, the U.S. subsidiary of Australia-based Genetic Technologies Limited, is a pioneer in personalized healthcare. Phenogen offers novel predictive testing and assessment tools that help physicians proactively manage women's health risks.

Phenogen's lead product, BREVAGen, is a clinically validated test that combines a woman's clinical history of estrogen exposure with her genetic predisposition to its effects - more accurately categorizing her personal risk for developing breast cancer. For more information, visit www.phenogensciences.com.

About Genetic Technologies Limited

Genetic Technologies is an established diagnostics company with more than 20 years of experience in commercializing genetic testing, non-coding DNA and product patenting.  The company has operations in Australia and the U.S. and is dual-listed on the ASX (GTG.AX) and NASDAQ (GENE).  Genetic Technologies is focused on the commercialization of its patent portfolio through an active out-licensing program and the global expansion of its oncology and cancer management diagnostics assets.  For more information, please visit www.gtglabs.com.


1 Mealiffe M, Stokowski RP, Rhees, BK, et al. J Nat Cancer Inst. 2010;102(21):1618-1627.

2 Saslow D, Boetes C, Burke W, et al. CA Cancer J Clin. 2007;57(2):75-89.

3 Visvanathan K, Chlebowski RT, Hurley P, et al. J Clin Oncol. 2009;27(19):3235-3258.

4 Breast Cancer Overview.  American Cancer Society.  Accessed 3/14/12 at
   http://www.cancer.org/Cancer/BreastCancer/OverviewGuide/breast-cancer-overview?docSelected=breast-cancer-overview-key-statistics

5 DeSantis C, Siegel R, Bandi P, Jemal A. CA:  A Cancer Journal For Clinicians. 2011;61:  409-418


Additional Information

About Breast Cancer

  • Approximately one in eight women will get breast cancer4
  • 70% to 80% of those who get breast cancer do not have familial risk indicators2
  • Risk of invasive vs. non-invasive breast cancer is approximately four times greater in women age 40-645
  • Approximately 75% of all breast cancer is estrogen-positive and, if detected early, can be effectively treated with five-year survival rates of over 95%
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Breast Cancer Demographics

According to the American Cancer Society, breast cancer is the most common cancer among women in the United States, other than skin cancer.  It is the second leading cause of death in women, after lung cancer.4  According to the 2010 breast cancer demographics there are:

  • Approximately 207,000 new cases diagnosed each year4
  • Of the 207,000 new cases, about 54,000 are non-invasive forms of breast cancer that have been diagnosed early4
  • Approximately 40,000 deaths related to breast cancer in women, annually4


BREVAGen reclassified 64% of above average Gail risk subjects1

BREVAGen reclassified 64% of Gail scores above average risk subjects as either high or low risk for development of hormone-dependent breast cancer.  Furthermore, the BREVAGen test reclassified the breast cancer risk for 33% of the total 3,300 trial subjects.1

About BREVAGen™

The first product in Phenogen Science's portfolio, BREVAGen™ is a predictive risk test for sporadic, hormone-dependent breast cancer.  The BREVAGen test combines a woman's clinical history of estrogen exposure with the presence of identified genetic markers to determine her five-year and lifetime risk for developing breast cancer.  For women whose clinical profile indicates prolonged estrogen exposure, BREVAGen helps to provide a more accurate risk assessment for estrogen-positive breast cancer.  The test results assist physicians in developing a personalized care path toward managing each woman's risk of developing breast cancer with greater precision than ever before.

  • Non-invasive, easy-to-use predictive risk assessment test
  • The first genetic risk prediction test to have been validated in a large-scale, peer-reviewed, case-controlled study1
  • Recent studies demonstrate that 64% of women who have above average risk of prolonged estrogen exposure were either reclassified above the guidelines for high risk management or below the general population risk when compared to clinical risk factors alone1
  • Supports existing industry guidelines for the prevention of estrogen-positive breast cancer2,3


Click here for BREVAGen B-roll/video:

  • Video One:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-em2pNeOMNs&feature=plcp
  • Video Two:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BSExN7mNlzA&feature=plcp

Photos accompanying this release are available at:
http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=16608

http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=16609

CONTACT: Tara Marchese
         Kovak-Likly Communications
         (203) 762-8833 TMarchese@klcpr.com

(Source: PrimeZone )
(Source: Quotemedia)

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