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Diagnostic for Cancer of the Adrenal Glands and Adrenal Cortex

Summary
The National Cancer Institute, Endocrine Oncology Branch seeks parties to co-develop a diagnostic method for adrenocortical cancer (ACC) through analysis of DNA methylation patterns in tissue.
NIH Reference Number
E-135-2012
Product Type
Keywords
  • DNA methylation
  • adrenocortical carcinoma (ACC)
  • malignancy
  • CpG methylation
Collaboration Opportunity
This invention is available for licensing and co-development.
Contact
Description of Technology

The National Cancer Institute, Endocrine Oncology Branch seeks parties to co-develop a diagnostic method for adrenocortical cancer (ACC) through analysis of DNA methylation patterns in tissue.

Adrenocortical carcinoma (ACC) is a very rare form of adrenal cancer.  Diagnosis is often done during surgical removal of the tumor.  Since the tumor pathology is not diagnosed prior to surgery, large numbers of patients with benign tumors undergo this surgery unnecessarily.  There remains a need for a less invasive diagnostic method to reduce both the healthcare costs and the unnecessary risks of invasive surgery on patients who do not have ACC.    

This technology represents new methods to distinguish malignant adrenocortical tumors from benign tumors and normal tissue in the adrenal glands/cortex using the methylation patterns of cytosine-phosphate-guanine dinucleotide (CpG) sequences.  Patient samples can be obtained using noninvasive means, such as a needle biopsy, and can allow clinicians to determine the malignancy and tumor type through analysis of the individual’s CpG methylation patterns.  The different CpG methylation patterns associated with normal, benign and malignant tissues may also serve as target sites for development of adrenocortical cancer therapeutics. 

Potential Commercial Applications
  • Nucleic acid-based diagnostic tests or kits to identify malignant adrenocortical tumors and distinguish them from common benign tumors or normal adrenocortical tissue
  • Identify CpG methylation sequences and patterns that could serve as targets for nonsurgical therapeutic interventions against adrenocortical tumors
  • Companion diagnostic test for candidate demethylation agent therapies for treating adrenocortical malignancies
Competitive Advantages
  • Malignant adrenocortical tumors can be differentiated from benign tumors without invasive surgery on individuals with benign tumors
  • Tissue collection for diagnosis is minimally invasive
Inventor(s)

Electron Kebebew (NCI), Nesrin S. Rechache (NCI), Paul S. Meltzer (NCI), Yonghong Wang (NCI)

Development Stage
Publications

Rechache N, et al. [PMID 22472567]

Patent Status
  • U.S. Patent Filed: U.S. Patent Application Number 14/384,583, Filed 11 Sep 2014
  • Foreign Filed: Foreign Filed - Patent Application PCT/US13/30347, Filed 12 Mar 2013
Therapeutic Area
Updated
Wednesday, August 31, 2016