GE Healthcare, Vanderbilt University Medical Center Partner For Safer, More Precise Immunotherapy Cancer Treatment – Jan 07, 2019 – Chicago, Illinois(Techreleased) – GE Healthcare and Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) today announced a five-year partnership to enable safer and more precise cancer immunotherapies. Multiple diagnostic tools will be developed to help predict both the efficacy of an immunotherapy treatment and its adverse effects for a specific patient before the therapy is administered. This would allow physicians to better target immunotherapies to the right patients and avoid potentially damaging, ineffective and costly courses of treatments.
Simultaneously, GE Healthcare and VUMC will develop new positron-emission tomography (PET) imaging tracers, which together with the apps, will help physicians to stratify cancer patients for clinical trials. It currently takes an average of 12 years (2) and costs almost $2bn (3) to bring a drug to market. In many cases, inappropriate patients are recruited to participate in immunotherapy trials, incurring unnecessary expense and slowing down approvals of new therapies. It is hoped that the PET tracers will ultimately also be used to monitor the efficacy of immunotherapies in everyday practice.
“Immunotherapy offers tremendous promise but given the current unpredictability of some patients’ reactions to treatments, it is also associated with increased morbidity and cost. This partnership provides the opportunity to leverage strengths of both of our organizations to further personalize cancer care by creating new tools that allow clinicians to more accurately predict how patients will respond to a specific therapy,” said Jeff Balser, MD, PhD, President and Chief Executive Officer, Vanderbilt University Medical Center and Dean of the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine.
“GE Healthcare and Vanderbilt will combine their data science, genomic, imaging and cellular analysis capabilities to help improve clinical decision making. This partnership is a great example of the increasing convergence of the tools, technologies and data used by therapy innovators and healthcare providers,” said Kieran Murphy, President and Chief Executive Officer, GE Healthcare.
GE Healthcare and the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center, a world-renowned stem cell transplant facility, will also collaborate on methods to improve productivity, efficiency and cost of stem cell transplant processing operations by automating processes, digitizing workflows, improving throughput and industrializing operations.