Press Release

Press Release

Illumina Supports National Program to Evaluate Potential of Comprehensive Genomic Profiling in Late Stage Cancer Real-World Setting Across Belgium

Feb 4, 2021

Study will measure the impact of comprehensive genomic profiling on access to, and uptake of, personalized medicines and on clinical outcomes for patients

SAN DIEGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- February 4, 2021 -- Today, Illumina, Inc. (NASDAQ:ILMN) announced an agreement with the Belgian Society of Medical Oncology (BSMO) which is running a new national pilot to evaluate the use of comprehensive genomic profiling (CGP) in 864 patients with advanced metastatic cancer. The BALLETT (Belgian Approach for Local Laboratory Extensive Tumor Testing) study will recruit patients from 12 participating sites to be offered CGP from one of nine next-generation sequencing laboratories across Belgium. Data from CGP will be used to determine the best therapeutic options for patients through access to targeted medicines with the aim of improving clinical outcomes in advanced cancer. The study will begin next month.

CGP uses NGS to analyze hundreds of genes and biomarkers in tissue and blood samples and detect those that are clinically relevant in driving cancer growth. Illumina will provide its CGP panel, TruSight™ Oncology 500 (TSO500), as well as NovaSeq™ 6000 and NextSeq™ sequencing platforms for the study. Clinical interpretation of the sequencing data will be carried out using PierianDx Clinical Genomic Workspace™ solution and OncoDNA Clinical Decision Support Platform OncoKDM®.

“Belgium is a leader in the application of new technologies to make precision healthcare a reality. Through this new study, we want to ensure that patients across Belgium can receive the right treatment for their particular cancer at the right time,” said Dr. Sylvie Rottey, Chair BSMO.

“CGP reveals the unique molecular profile of a patient’s cancer which empowers their oncology team to propose the most effective course of treatment suited to them,” said Phil Febbo, MD, Chief Medical Officer at Illumina. “We are very pleased to be working with the BSMO and the different cancer institutes across Belgium to examine the value of CGP in a real-world setting in terms of its ability to improve patient outcomes through more targeted treatment options.”

Doctor Brigitte Maes of the Jessa Hospital in Belgium, Coordinator of the BALLETT study, said, “As part of Belgium’s broad approach to advancing precision medicine the study will generate valuable insights into the value of CGP versus currently reimbursed sequencing approaches. For example, in addition to genetic mutations that drive cancer formation, CGP will also identify cancers driven by the tumor mutational burden (TMB) biomarker which can guide patients towards immunotherapy treatments. This means that the study will give access to additional treatments which may not have been considered through more traditional diagnostic testing.”

Genomic data together with de-identified clinical data from the study will be used to populate a newly-established national genomic tumor database, collated with oversight from Belgium’s Scientific Institute for Public Health, Sciensano, designed to advance precision medicine and patients’ access to novel effective therapies.

About Illumina

Illumina is improving human health by unlocking the power of the genome. Our focus on innovation has established us as the global leader in DNA sequencing and array-based technologies, serving customers in the research, clinical and applied markets. Our products are used for applications in the life sciences, oncology, reproductive health, agriculture and other emerging segments. To learn more, visit and connect with us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and YouTube.

Juliet Cunningham

Dr. Karen Birmingham
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Source: Illumina, Inc.