The Science

Genetic Prediction of Disease Outcomes

Diseases like cancer, Type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease (CVD) impose an unparalleled burden on global health and on the medical care budget. CVD is a major global cause of death and disability.

Current practice: Existing preventive treatments for CVD use a ‘one size fits all’ approach. These are not completely effective, reducing risk by only 30% to 60%. Large groups of people not needing interventions are treated, at great cost, and a significant proportion of people at high risk go unidentified. Currently, identification of risk is based on various clinical factors that indicate processes leading to CVD are already underway. A more targeted approach is needed and, ideally, a diagnostic test could be administered before the onset of symptoms. A suitable genetic test could diagnose risk years, even decades, earlier.

Our innovation: Advanced Genetic Tests has developed a genetic test that can define a group of people at high risk of heart attack or stroke. The current ‘standard clinical test’ for predicting heart disease risk is the Framingham Risk Score (FRS). As you can see in the comparison below, our test provides more accuracy than the FRS.

In the example below, blue lines indicate results of the groups of people considered as having low risk; red lines represent results of people considered as having high risk:

Increased risk for people with diabetes: People with Type 2 diabetes are particularly at risk of CVD.  Our genetic test found that 50% of the high-risk group had a CVD event before they turned 70; eventually 95% did so. Given the increasing prevalence of T2D and the consequent burden on the health system, it is critical to identify and treat these people earlier.

Measuring success: One of the most clinically useful approaches to evaluate new tests is net reclassification improvement (NRI), which measures a new test’s ability to re-assign individuals to lower or higher risk categories correctly. Coronary artery calcium is the strongest bio-marker with an NRI of 19% for CHD. Our test, applied to hypertensive subjects, had an NRI of 18% for CVD and 37% for CHD.

Surviving the deadly skin cancer melanoma: AGT can also deliver tests to predict survival after diagnosis of cancers, such as melanoma, and these tests are more accurate than the “gold standard” clinical tests such as the Breslow Risk Score.

AGT can also develop tests for any disease with a genetic basis.

These examples are shown to illustrate the power of our technology. We will provide these tests as soon as we have obtained clearance from the relevant government authorities.