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New Data Suggest Veracyte's Afirma® Gene Expression Classifier Cost-Effectively Resolves Inconclusive Thyroid Nodule FNA Biopsy Results
Date:9/1/2011

SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., Sept. 1, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Veracyte, Inc., a molecular diagnostics company pioneering the emerging field of molecular cytology, today announced that new data from researchers at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine suggest that routine use of its Afirma® Gene Expression Classifier for clarifying inconclusive results on thyroid nodule fine needle aspiration (FNA) samples will improve patient care and save the healthcare system money. According to the economic impact study, nationwide use of the company's test would reduce the number of surgeries on patients with benign thyroid nodules by 74%, or 50,000 each year, and would provide more than $600 million in direct medical savings over five years. The study appears online in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism and is scheduled for publication in the journal's November print issue.

"The clinical and economic impacts of implementing this new technology are, in fact, similar in magnitude to those that accompanied the introduction almost 40 years ago of FNA cytology to differentiate between benign and malignant thyroid nodules," said study author Paul W. Ladenson, M.D., professor of endocrinology and metabolism and director of the Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism at the Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. "We found that, even when we assessed a wide range of possible scenarios in our economic model, 93% of our projections using the gene expression test actually reduced costs while improving health outcomes. This is a rare finding for implementation of a novel management strategy."  

The study was conducted using a Markov economic model to simulate costs over five years of managing adult patients with thyroid nodules whose FNA results are deemed inconclusive by cytology. The study compared direct medical costs using current practice, which relies on cytology alone, with hypothetical use of Veracyte's Afirma Gene Expression Cl
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