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Quest Diagnostics Launches Molecular Cervical Cancer Test Based on National Institutes of Health's TERC Gene Marker
Date:8/30/2012

MADISON, N.J., Aug. 30, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Quest Diagnostics (NYSE: DGX), the world's leading provider of diagnostic testing, information and services, today announced the availability of a new laboratory test that identifies molecular changes to cervical cells that increase the likelihood a woman may develop cervical cancer. The test is designed to help physicians identify women who are at increased risk of developing malignancy, unless treated, after receiving unclear results for cervical cancer risk from standard screening tests.

"Given that medical guidelines now advise less frequent cervical cancer screening for women, it is more important than ever that testing for this cancer be highly reliable," said Daniel M. Jones, M.D., Ph.D., Medical Director, Cancer Diagnostics Services, Quest Diagnostics. "Testing for abnormalities of the TERC gene is based on the most advanced scientific knowledge available of the molecular changes that turn cervical dysplasia into malignancy. It can potentially act like a 'second opinion' for the thousands of women whose Pap and HPV test results produce an indeterminate picture of cancer risk each year." 

The Quest Diagnostics Cervical Cancer TERC test is based on the human telomerase RNA component (TERC) gene marker under a nonexclusive patent license from the National Institutes of Health (NIH).  Research by NIH has shown that the TERC gene is amplified, indicated by an abnormal number of copies of the gene on chromosome arm 3q, in the precursor cells of cervical cancer and therefore may be useful for risk stratification in Papanicolaou (Pap) screening.

"One of NIH's goals is to collaborate with commercial organizations to transform our scientific discoveries into clinically valuable technologies," said Dr. Mark Rohrbaugh, Director of the Office of Technology Transfer at the NIH. "T
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SOURCE Quest Diagnostics Incorporated
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