RNS Number : 5206P
NetScientific PLC
18 November 2016



("NetScientific" or the "Company" or the "Group")


Portfolio Company Vortex Bioscience's circulating tumour cell (CTC) technology used in analysis demonstrating the value of combining CTCs and circulating free DNA (cfDNA)

Demonstrates the Value of Combining CTCs and cfDNA in Assessing Cancer Patient Disease

London, UK - November 18 - NetScientific plc (AIM:NSCI), the transatlantic healthcare IP commercialisation group, announces that technology from its portfolio company, Vortex Biosciences, was used in an analysis, published in peer-reviewed Oncotarget, of the merits of various approaches to assessing the mutation profiles in tumours.


The analysis compared circulating tumour cells (CTCs), circulating free DNA (cfDNA) and tumour biopsy data, and found that all approaches had advantages and limitations, but that the analysis of CTC and cfDNA together appears to enhance the ability to assess the mutation profile and metastatic status of a tumour.


Commenting on the news, NetScientific's Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of Vortex, Francois R. Martelet, said: "These findings are not only very significant for Vortex but critical to the ongoing debate about the merits of these technologies. They appear to support the use of a complementary approach, using both technologies, to diagnose and monitor tumours and their mutation profile.

"We are very pleased that Vortex's technology has played such a critical part in this important study."

Vortex Bioscience's press release follows:



Vortex Biosciences Announces Publication in Oncotarget That Demonstrates the Value of Combining CTCs and cfDNA in Assessing Cancer Patient Disease


Mutation Profiles from Matched Tumor and Blood Samples were Compared between the Tumor, cfDNA and CTCs


MENLO PARK, CA, November 17, 2016 - Vortex Biosciences, provider of circulating tumor cell (CTC) capture systems, today announced the publication of "Enumeration and targeted analysis of KRAS, BRAF and PIK3CA mutations in CTCs captured by a label-free platform: Comparison to ctDNA and tissue in metastatic colorectal cancer" in Oncotarget on November 15th, 2016.


The peer reviewed publication describes the use of Vortex technology to capture CTCs and compare mutation profiles in the CTC DNA, cfDNA, and tumor biopsy DNA.  There were several examples where CTCs exhibited a mutation that was not detected in ctDNA, and vice versa. Complementary assessment of both CTCs and ctDNA appears advantageous to assess dynamic tumor profiles.


From 15 patients with advanced CRC undergoing liver metastasectomy with curative intent, 41 blood samples were collected at different time points before and after liver surgery for CTC-isolation and quantification using the Vortex technology.


The Vortex Bioscience technology captures unlabelled CTCs in whole blood by trapping the cells in microscale vortices while smaller red and white blood cells pass through. After selective trapping of the CTCs in microfluidic chambers, CTCs are flushed and collected into a variety of containers for downstream analysis. In this publication, KRAS, BRAF, and PIK3CA hotspot mutations were analyzed in CTCs and cfDNA from 23 samples, 9 matched liver metastases and 3 primary tumor samples.


"We see CTCs and cfDNA as complementary to each other, together offering a better understanding of a patient's disease," said Gene Walther, Chief Executive Officer of Vortex Biosciences. "Our next generation CTC capture system allows for the collection of CTCs after the plasma has been removed for cfDNA extraction in a simple, easy to use workflow."


80% of patient blood samples were positive for CTCs, using a healthy baseline value as a threshold. This includes 19% of patients that were EpCAM negative and thus would not have been identified by CTC enrichment technologies targeting EpCAM. Among 23 matched CTC and cfDNA samples, we found a concordance of 78.2% for KRAS, 73.9% for BRAF and 91.3% for PIK3CA mutations. The concordance with the tumor samples for CTCs and ctDNA respectively was 72% and 76%. However, when the mutation profile detected in CTCs and cfDNA was combined, the concordance with the tumor was >95%.


With the ability to capture both CTCs and cfDNA in a simple workflow, the Vortex technology can seamlessly integrate into a genomic testing process, transforming the way patient samples can be analyzed.



- Ends -


For more information, please contact:


François R. Martelet, M.D., CEO

Ian Postlethwaite, CFO


Tel: +44 (0)20 3514 1800

Stifel Nicolaus Europe Limited (NOMAD and broker)

Jonathan Senior / David Arch / Ben Maddison

Tel: +44 (0) 20 7710 7600


Consilium Strategic Communications

Mary-Jane Elliott / Jessica Hodgson / Chris Welsh / Laura Thornton


Tel: +44 (0)20 3709 5700



About NetScientific Plc

NetScientific is a transatlantic healthcare IP commercialisation group focused on improving the health and well-being of people with chronic diseases. For more information, please visit the website at www.netscientific.net.

About Vortex Biosciences

Vortex Biosciences is a cancer research and diagnostics company that integrates cancer biology, microfluidic engineering and informatics to develop tools for isolating and characterizing circulating tumor cells. The Vortex technology will enable the harvesting of intact circulating tumor cells from whole blood samples for use in downstream research and clinical applications such as patient stratification in clinical trials, monitoring disease progression and drug treatment effectiveness. [include that the first test is CE Marked?]With a mission to enable noninvasive diagnosis of cancer and real-time monitoring throughout a patient's treatment, Vortex is at the forefront of accelerating cancer research and improving patient outcomes. Vortex is a core subsidiary of NetScientific plc, a transatlantic healthcare technology group with an investment strategy focused on sourcing, funding and commercializing technologies that significantly improve the health and well-being of people with chronic diseases. For more information, visit www.vortexbiosciences.com.


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