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CO-WRITTEN / PARTNER | Staff Reporter, Singapore
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Femto Research grabs Service Innovation of the Year at Healthcare Asia Awards

The company’s Saliva p53Microbiome can identify and monitor various cancers and suitably replace blood samples.

Femto Research Group Co., Ltd won the Service Innovation of the Year Award - Thailand with its cancer breakthrough of the year, named Saliva p53Microbiome.

The award-winning initiative uses the plasma-derived markers found in saliva, which contains a rich mixture of biological components that are useful in observing oral, pancreatic, breast, head and neck cancers, including two recent cases—a late stage lung cancer patient and early diagnosis of non-sick prostate cancer case from Femto Laboratory.

The dried saliva assay can identify young and advanced cancer cells in most cancer types, determine microbial DNA insertions hidden in human cancer genomes, and pinpoint cancer patients who can resist standard treatments and medication. It also minimizes the risk of needle stick injuries, since acquiring saliva for diagnosis is noninvasive, making it a good substitute for blood samples.

Only available at Femto Laboratory in Bangkok, Thailand, Saliva p53Microbiome is developed further from the Plasma p53Microbiome and dried blood spots (DBS), which were both previously recognised by Healthcare Asia Awards in 2018 and 2019, respectively.

The saliva microbiome tests were cultivated based on experience from the development of the lauded plasma microbiome assay. Clinical applications are as straightforward as those of the Plasma p53Microbiome predecessor and can even replace it in some situations.

Some clinics have already chosen the Saliva p53Microbiome as a substitute for the Plasma p53Microbiome and have decided to combine it with DBS. It has been especially beneficial in cases that require follow-ups post-prevention and treatment.

Much like the group’s previous innovation, Saliva p53Microbiome uses the p53 gene as a sensor marker due to its frequent mutations in most cancers. The gene is a primary target of microbial modulation and its mutations can affect cancer medications and treatments.

Given concerns in developing a trusted method that can preserve and transport saliva samples, Femto Research Group predominantly focused on dried saliva spots (DSS). The non-invasive sample collection can be conveniently gathered and shipped even from the most remote regions and countries, thereby ensuring access to everyone.

Interpretation of the assay is grounded on peer-reviewed publications, including the Human Genome Project database, the Human Microbiome Project database, and several other significant databases.

In addition, saliva and plasma microbial DNA inserts and integrations are overlapped. A combination of these DNA profiles can warrant a complete set of an individual’s infectious DNA profile.

Upon witnessing the accomplishments in creating a dried saliva assay, Thailand’s National Innovation Agency has shown interest in funding the laboratory’s semi-ready-to-use test kit, which are positioned to identify H. Pylori in dried saliva.

For four years in a row, Femto Research Group has successfully developed unique and groundbreaking cancer-related innovation services that can pinpoint most of the cancer-causing infectious agents at the genus, species, and strains without the need to conduct culture at all.

The favourable outcome in the development of both DBS and DSS could pave the way to global services, targeting those in need of cancer-related secrets in the genome for individualized prevention and treatment.

Femto Research Group’s innovations are expected to enhance human cancer health through microbiome-based diagnosis, which should assist in accelerating Precision Health and Precision Medicine, a worldwide personalised healthcare goal.

Watch the interview below to know more about their winning strategy:

The Healthcare Asia Awards 2020 was held virtually on 14-17 April 2020.

This year's nominations were judged by Chris Hardesty, Director, Healthcare & Life Sciences Practice, KPMG; Abhay Bangi, Partner, Life Sciences & Healthcare Lead, Ernst & Young; Tan Boon Kai, Partner, Audit & Assurance, BDO LLP; Mairin Reid, Director, Life Sciences & Healthcare, Deloitte.

If you would like to join the 2021 awards and be awarded as one of the most outstanding healthcare companies in the region, please email Julie Anne Nuñez at julie@charltonmediamail.com 

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