Fluidigm Corporation and OncoMed Pharmaceuticals, Inc. have announced a new initiative to apply Fluidigm's unique microfluidic tools to the analysis of tumor cell heterogeneity, including cancer stem cells. The collaboration will combine Fluidigm's advanced microfluidic platforms with OncoMed's proprietary cancer stem cell sorting technology to generate unique tools for analyzing, quantifying and developing treatments directed at this highly tumorigenic cell population.
In the initial application, OncoMed will apply Fluidigm's BioMark™ System along with their proprietary Dynamic Array™ integrated fluidic circuits (IFCs) to perform detailed gene expression analysis of solid tumors at the whole tumor and single-cell level. This phase will track changes in cancer stem cells found in human tumors following treatment with OncoMed's extensive pipeline of therapeutic monoclonal antibodies.
The companies will apply this same technology to analyze tumor heterogeneity and cancer stem cell frequency across OncoMed's proprietary human tumor bank which includes approximately one hundred human tumor biopsies that have been engrafted and minimally passaged in immunocompromised mice. The OncoMed/Fluidigm collaboration also has the potential to include novel and next-generation microfluidic and tissue sample-preparation technologies that Fluidigm is currently developing.