VANCOUVER, British Columbia--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Contextual Genomics Inc., a leading Canadian cancer genomics company headquartered in Vancouver, Canada, announces that its Scientific Founders, Drs. Samuel Aparicio, David Huntsman and Sohrab Shah, have been recognized by Web of Science (Clarivate Analytics) for their exceptional research performance, as determined by production of multiple highly cited papers that rank in the top 1% by citations for field and year. Of the world population of scientists and social scientists, the Clarivate Analytics, Highly Cited Researchers are one in 1,000.
The Clarivate Analytics list of Highly Cited Researchers for 2018 identifies scientists and social scientists who have demonstrated significant influence through publication of multiple highly cited papers during the last decade. Researchers are selected for their exceptional performance in one or more of 21 fields or across several fields.
Samuel Aparicio, Scientific Founder and Chief Scientific Officer of Contextual Genomics, has been recognized in a new category this year - cross field, recognizing those with outsized influence across several fields. Dr. Aparicio’s research made significant contributions to a number of Clarivate Analytics categories including clinical medicine, molecular biology and genetics. “It is a privilege to be cited in so many valuable publications across diverse fields,” said Dr. Aparicio. “Our goal is to continue to help cancer patients around the world, through academic discoveries, and through genomic assays delivered by Contextual Genomics.”
Sohrab Shah, Scientific Founder and Chief Informatics Officer of Contextual Genomics, has also been recognized in the new cross field category. “Genome science requires cross-disciplinary collaboration - computer scientists, statisticians, molecular biologists, geneticists and pathologists. It’s exciting to see that our cross disciplinary science is read and cited by our colleagues in the field,” said Dr. Shah. “Contextual Genomics’ approach to helping patients has from the very beginning brought together scientists across quantitative and biomedical fields working in an integrated environment to deliver comprehensive molecular and informatics solutions.”
David Huntsman, Scientific Founder and Chief Medical Officer of Contextual Genomics, has been recognized in the field of Clinical Medicine. “This acknowledgment means that our academic research has effectively influenced the research of other scientists around the world,” says Dr. Huntsman. “Contextual Genomics has enabled us to use cancer genomics to impact patients directly around the world.”
In 2012, Drs. Aparicio, Shah and Huntsman founded Contextual Genomics, partner of choice to help clinical laboratories implement quality assured Next Generation Sequence (NGS) based somatic mutation testing in their own facilities. Contextual Genomics’ solutions allow partner laboratories to facilitate access for cancer patients to high quality and affordable genomic testing for improved cancer care through a more personalized and targeted therapy approach. “That the three Scientific Founders of Contextual Genomics, all of which are Canada Research Chairs, are recognized through the impact of their work on other research speaks to the high level of the science that underpins all of Contextual Genomics’ activities and may mark us as unique in our sector,” said Celia Courchene, President of Contextual Genomics.
Contextual Genomics has developed FIND ITTM, a proprietary molecular hotspot assay that screens for more than 140 somatic genome alterations found in solid tumour cancers to identify optimal therapeutic treatments and recognize acquired drug resistant mutations, making it possible for doctors to customize therapies with greater precision for cancer patients. The FIND ITTM assay, supported by Contextual Genomics’ innovative, cloud-based analysis engine, also helps to determine prognostic and diagnostic implications for patient care.
Contextual Genomics is also developing FOLLOW ITTM, a proprietary mutation detection liquid biopsy assay that screens for cell-free circulating tumour DNA (ctDNA) in plasma. FOLLOW ITTM will be deployed for patients with widespread metastatic disease at diagnosis and for use as a time series monitoring tool to read out tumour burden and treatment resistance. FOLLOW ITTM will screen for all of the same somatic genome alterations as FIND ITTM and can be used to follow disease progression for patients, including those whose tumours were initially tested with FIND ITTM.
Chris Wagner, Contextual Genomics’ Executive Chairman, said “This external validation of the work of Drs. Aparicio, Shah and Huntsman is well deserved. We see the important contributions these dedicated scientists make through the scientific, informatics and medical leadership that they provide to our team, products and business every day and we are very happy to see it recognized in such a prestigious way. Their exceptional leadership, combined with the talents of our team, have allowed us to develop and deliver our very important products, including FIND ITTM and FOLLOW ITTM, for the worldwide cancer community.”
About Contextual’s Products:
The FIND ITTM and FOLLOW ITTM cancer panels are multiplex, next- generation sequencing genomic assays designed for rapid deployment into labs around the world. Both FIND ITTM and FOLLOW ITTM evaluate the mutation status of tumour DNA (FIND ITTM for solid tumours; FOLLOW ITTM for cell-free circulating tumour DNA in plasma) at 140 well-characterized positions, identifying the somatic mutations that have the greatest potential to impact treatment decisions. QUALITY NEXUSTM is a quality control system embedded into all FIND ITTM and FOLLOW ITTM assays and into Contextual Genomics’ cloud-based analysis engine. FIND ITTM and FOLLOW ITTM physician reports provide clear information on test interpretation and linkages to current therapeutic options.
About Contextual Genomics (www.contextualgenomics.com):
Contextual Genomics develops cost-effective and clinically actionable molecular tests that guide diagnosis and treatment of cancer. These customized tests are offered by our partner laboratories around the world with Contextual conducting cloud-based bioinformatics services via a SaaS model. The collection of data via this robust network of partners and the use of machine-learning tools allows Contextual Genomics to improve patient care through improved clinical trial enrolment and new treatment algorithms. Contextual Genomics is founded and managed by global leaders in cancer medicine and bioinformatics, who have unparalleled expertise in cancer genomics and the clonal evolution of cancer.
This release contains forward-looking statements that are not based on historical fact. These forward-looking statements involve risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause the actual results, events or developments to be materially different from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on such forward-looking statements.