A study published in the British Journal of Cancer shows the high sensitivity and specificity of the Tethys liquid biopsy platform in early-stage breast cancer and the identification of clusters of circular tumor cells for the first time in non-metastatic patients

MILAN,, March 25, 2021 / PRNewswire / – Tethis SpA announces publication of pilot study of early breast cancer showing analytical performance of SBS novel® a liquid biopsy platform for the accurate identification of localized breast cancer patients and for the first time for the identification and characterization of CTC clusters in non-metastatic patients. The study, conducted in collaboration with the University Hospital of Basel and led by prof. Nicola Aceto, was performed using Tethis ‘automated sample preparation instrument together with Tethis’ proprietary SBS® slides and was published in the peer-reviewed British Journal of Cancer, part of the Nature Portfolio. You can access the entire paper at https://www.nature.com/articles/s41416-021-01327-8.

SBS® liquid biopsy is a new method which, thanks to the immediate and automated preparation of samples, gives the sample an intact repertoire of clinically informative cells from fresh blood, enabling the achievement of maximum sensitivity even in early cancer settings; this study was conducted in a blinded analysis of 58 cases (30 healthy donors and 28 patients with localized breast cancer) and showed an overall sensitivity of 75%, with 97% specificity in distinguishing breast cancer patients from healthy individuals; sensitivity was 81% in 21 patient-like lumens, a relevant subgroup given that only ER and Her2 markers were used as criteria for positivity. Moreover, for the first time, it was possible to identify CTC clusters in 5 of 28 patients with early breast cancer, so far described only in metastatic settings.

“My team and I have been working on CTC clusters for years and their role in the metastatic process,” said Prof. Nicola AcetoDr., Professor of Molecular Oncology and Group Leader at Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) Zurich. “Finding them in a significant proportion of patients with localized cancer is revolutionary, and although the study is small, it paves the way for larger trials to assess their clinical significance and evaluate the effectiveness of anti-CTC cluster drug therapy.”

“We are thrilled with the results of this study,” he said Roberta CarboneDr. Sc., Chief Scientific Officer at Tethis “who strongly suggests the feasibility of a non-invasive early detection test for breast cancer based on our proprietary liquid biopsy platform. We firmly believe that immediate, standardized and gentle blood sample preparation are key drivers of success in a difficult environment, such as early detection of cancer, and that our platform responds properly to those needs. “


Tethis SpA is based in Milan, Italy, and is developing a new work process to incorporate liquid biopsy into clinical practice for precise cancer management. Tethys technology indicates the standardization of blood sample preparation to ensure the highest quality and integrity of liquid biopsy samples for comprehensive analysis of clinically informative biomarkers. The company’s proprietary nanocoated slides in combination with an automated pre-analysis instrument allow the recognition and characterization of rare cells in the blood, such as circulating tumor cells, with unprecedented sensitivity, also in the early stages.

Additional information is available on the company’s website, www.tethis-lab.com.