BostonGene has announced it is partnering with Hokkaido University Hospital in hopes of identifying the best therapy options for HER-2 low breast cancer patients.

The partnership is part of a broader research directive to better understand different approaches for treating breast cancer.

The Japanese academic-hospital said they will use BostonGene’s AI-based molecular tests to determine the tumor microenvironment and HER2 expression levels of certain breast cancer patients.

In addition, BostonGene’s machine learning algorithm Kassandra will digitally reconstruct the tissue tumour microenvironment and cellular composition to identify distinct cell populations.

The data that is harvested will be used to identify HER2-low patients who can benefit from trastuzumab-deruxtecan, an antibody-drug conjugate targeting HER2.

The joint research will be led by professors Ichiro Kinoshita at the Division of Clinical Cancer Genomics and the Department of Medical Oncology, as well as Masato Takahashi at the Department of Breast Surgery.

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Kinoshita said: “We are excited to enter into this partnership with BostonGene to fully understand the molecular profiles of our patients. BostonGene’s comprehensive solutions have the potential to deliver breakthrough discoveries and help us identify novel treatment approaches.”

Takahashi added: “Breast cancer ranks as the primary cause of cancer in women across the country. Enhancing treatment outcomes remains a critical focus. Through the findings of this research, we aim to advance technologies that offer more precise medical care and minimize the recurrence of breast cancer in as many patients as possible.”

According to a Global Data report, the HER2+ breast cancer market is set to expand to $12.1 billion by 2030. The US is the largest market, accounting for 57% of total HER2+ breast cancer sales in 2020. At the same time, Japan counted for 5.9% of sales – totaling $615 million, with the market expected to shrink by 0.4% by 2030.

Nathan Fowler, chief medical officer at BostonGene added: “We’re honoured to partner with Hokkaido University providing our AI-based molecular and immune profiling to uncover treatable targets to personalize therapy for breast cancer patients.

“This collaboration supports our mission to equip doctors in finding the most effective treatment options for their patients.”