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Physician Information

Treatment Information for Physicians

With rare exception, all human cancers present the treating physician with therapeutic choices.  Currently hundreds of drugs, combinations and targeted agents are used to treat cancer patients. 

How do you as a treating physician choose?

What if you could receive specific information on how your patient’s cancer cells will react to single agents, combinations or targeted therapies? 

What if there was a tool to help you significantly improve the chances of your patient’s response and survival?

Well there is.

It's called a functional profiling test and results are available within 7 days.

For 20+ years, we have refined the technology of functional profiling, a laboratory test that provides a real-time snapshot of how human tumors behave within their natural microenvironment. 

Dr. Nagourney, his team and colleagues have published a number of papers supporting the use of the Ex-Vivo Analysis of Programmed Cell Death (EVA-PCD) functional profiling assay, as well as the effectiveness of new drugs and combinations.

Click here to see some of our published papers.

Download a copy of our physician brochure here:  Get the brochure 

How the Process Works

After incorporating the realization that cancer biology was predicated on cell survival and not cell growth, we redoubled our efforts to recreate the human tumor micro-environment in tissue culture. We immediately recognized that this required the  preservation of cell-cell interactions found normally in the body as cellular clusters.

These cellular clusters better known as microspheroids represent cohesive populations that interact directly with stroma, vasculature, inflammatory cells, and other tumor cells. Thus, the microspheroid recapitulates the human tumor environment.

By applying cell death endpoints (the most rigorous of predictive measures) to these microspheroids, we have overcome pitfalls encountered by earlier technologies.

And, for the first time, a truly predictive human tumor model that we call the Ex Vivo Analysis of Programmed Cell Death (EVA-PCD) assay has been developed. 

Below is a look at a pancreatic cancer example:

Pancreatic cancer cells isolate in microspheroids

Pancreatic cancer cells isolated into microspheroids and maintained in a 3-D environment.

Pancreatic cancer cells exposed to Trimetrexate with no effect
Pancreatic cancer cells exposed to Trimetrexate – no effect.
Pancreatic cancer cells undergoing programmed cell death from Mitomycin C plus Irinotecan
Pancreatic cancer cells undergoing programmed cell death following exposure to Mitomycin C plus Irinotecan. 

Whether the patient is newly diagnosed, experiencing a recurrence or their current chemotherapy is no longer effective, we can help.

Living cells vs. dead cells shows which drugs kill the cancer cells (these cells are “sensitive” to these drugs) and which ones do not (these cancer cells are “resistant” to these drugs).  

Which patients are good candidates for this?
The patient is a good candidate for the EVA-PCD functional profiling analysis if: 
  • The patient is considering chemotherapy.
  • The patient is not currently receiving treatment (whereby the current treatment may interfere with our results).
  • We can easily obtain a 1 cm piece of viable tumor (solid tumor, lymph nodes, etc.) or cytologically positive pleural or ascites fluid.  NOTE:  Needle biopsies do not provide the quantity of tumor required.
  • The sample is received in our laboratory within 24-36 hours of collection. 

The number of drugs analyzed is dependent upon the quantity/quality of the sample we receive.  

We are happy to work with you to customize drug panels for each patient based on their diagnosis and previous treatment history.

The use of this assay enables you to prescribe those agents with the highest probability of improving the patient’s outcome and minimizing unnecessary toxic therapies.

Download Assay Requisition Form

Our Specimen Processing Instructions

Download our EVA-PCD functional profiling analysis specimen processing requirements here:

Specimen Processing Instructions

View a Sample Report

Click the link below to view a sample report:



How We Test Your Cancer

See the process we use to test your living cancer cells in the laboratory in order to find the most effective and least toxic regimen for your cancer.