Genetic testing


Here at Lody Health, we take cancer very seriously and offer our patients evidence-based, effective, alternative medical treatments along with other modalities in combination.

We are proud to announce that we have recently added a new valuable option for cancer patients to explore, to help with the fight against this disease. We added: Genetic Testing.

Genetic Testing and Personalized Treatment Plan Design and Advocacy:

Using the most comprehensive genetic panels for cancer care available today, our team will ensure that you have the most accurate information and the most thorough list of beneficial treatment options for you.

Most of these personalized treatment options have FDA and Health Canada Approval and can therefore be prescribed by your current oncologist with coverage through your public healthcare program.

This is important because ALL of the advanced new drugs that have been created to treat cancer since the discovery of the human genome in early 2000, have been specifically designed to target specific mutations, over-expressed genes or molecular features.

In fact, almost no chemotherapy drugs have been invented in over 20 years.

Everything in cancer care has been focused on the individual genetics and personal drivers of each patient’s cancer – and your cancer care needs to be properly targeted to you!

What is Genetic Testing For Cancer?

Genetic testing for cancer is an approach to cancer diagnosis that uses the most advanced medical science to identify the molecular causes of your cancer.

Using blood and / or tissue, our team looks at your tumour DNA and your RNA to identify the root causes of your cancer and match you to the most current, FDA approved treatment options.


Genetic Testing Involves Finding Changes In:

  • Tissue Based Testing: Before we get started on the amazing new technologies we use, it is important to understand how the preparation of a tumor biopsy affects results. Typically, when a surgeon removes a tumor, they place it in a preservative called ‘FFPE”. This allows the sample to be stored at room temperature for many years. However, this can be problematic. Firstly, DNA and especially RNA can degrade in FFPE. Secondly, most tumor biopsies have limited amounts of tumor cells (20-60%). Most sequencing platforms require at least 30-50% tumor cells. And finally, most sequencing services use a primitive physical technique to stain and isolate the tumor cells for further analysis. This can result in many non-tumor cells being used in the analysis, diluting the import genetic information unique to the tumor and even missing important genes or in over 50% of the cases, getting a “failed test” and wasting your very precious and limited tissue samples! Our genetic testing team is just not satisfied with accepting that level of failure with something so important as your cancer care. That’s why we use a specialized pathology service that implements a new technology called “laser dissection’. With this technology, we are able to obtain a highly purified quantity of tumor cells for analysis that is superior to all other methods of extraction.  Our specialized pathology process makes sure you get the best possible test result.

Furthermore, we utilize the latest in robotic closed-system (automated) ion-based next-generation sequencing (NGS).

This means we are able to not only obtain high purified levels of tumor DNA/RNA, but we can also get important data and results in biopsy samples that would fail using all other sequencing techniques.

  • Genes: Gene tests study DNA sequences to identify variations (mutations) in genes that can change how the genes function. Inactivating mutations can happen in the genes that protect you from cancer (tumor suppressor genes) or activating mutations can happen in the genes that cause cancers (oncogenes). Tumor DNA sequencing is the tool that lets you know what amazing new drugs will work for your unique case, and importantly, which ones will not.
  • RNA: RNA is an intermediate step between DNA and the proteins encoded by the DNA. Every cell in our body has the same DNA. However, we have many different types of tissues and cells. This is because ‘epigenetic control’ turns some genes on or off to create unique cells such as skin, bone etc. Importantly, cancer cells also use epigenetics to turn certain genes off and on in order to grow and metastasize.

Lody’s genetic testing team uses an amazing new test that has only recently been possible which looks at the expression levels of 22,000 genes in a tumor and compares what genes are under or over-expressed in the tumor compared to the normal cell of the same tissue. This allows us to match your tumor to a large library of FDA approved targeted drugs that will be specific for you and your case. In some cases, a heart medication may be best for you, in other situations, maybe a prostate cancer drug will work best for your breast cancer. The point is you NEVER KNOW UNTIL YOU TEST. But with our team’s highly accurate testing and personalized research program, you will have the most accurate diagnosis possible, anywhere in the world, and, most importantly, a solid list of cancer treatment options that your oncologist can prescribe for you, through public healthcare.

What if you don’t have an existing tissue biopsy or surgery planned in the near future and you still want to ensure you use genetic testing to inform your cancer treatment plan?  We have got you covered!

Liquid Biopsies – Blood Based Testing for Cancer

  • Exosomes: Exosomes are the future of cancer treatment and diagnostics. In short, exosomes are small membrane bound packets of DNA, RNA, and proteins that cells use to communicate. They are released into blood and other bodily fluids. Importantly, we now know that cancer cells send out ‘cancer-causing’ exosomes in order to metastasize and spread and exosomes can even turn a normal healthy cell to become a cancer cell!
  • Lody is now offering our patients the latest ‘exosome-based testing’ of DNA and RNA. In short, we can now isolate cancer-causing exosomes from your blood and test them for genes that are highly over-expressed (using RNA). This gives us the ability to determine exactly what genes your cancer is using IN REAL TIME. In other words, what genes is your cancer using today to metastasize.
  • ctDNA: If that is not enough, we also use the latest in digital PCR to identify with very high accuracy the level of any of your driving DNA mutations from your blood. Let’s say you have melanoma, and your diagnostic genetic testing identifies that one of the main mutations driving your cancer is a BRAF V600E mutation, and you want to start a new drug or clinical trial but you don’t want to waste time on a drug if it isn’t working. We can test your blood prior to and within a few weeks after you have started the new drug. If the level of the BRAF mutation was 9% prior to starting and is now 1% after treatment, we know the drug is working without having to wait 4 months for a scan.

Take Away The Guessing Game From Cancer Care

Cancer all about the genetics and epigenetics:

We now know without a doubt that due to the genetic and epigenetic nature of cancer, each person’s cancer is unique. The more information you can gather about why you developed cancer and which treatments are designed to target the drivers of your cancer, the better the treatment will work.

This is why it is vital to get a detailed genetic (DNA) and epigenetic (RNA expression) analysis of your tumour DNA & RNA, as this is the only way to confidently identify your unique set of mutations and over-expressed genes to ensure you are matched to the right targeted treatment.

Worried About Cancer?

If you are worried about having cancer but don’t have the symptoms required for standard care diagnostics, or if you have other family members with cancer, or want to ensure there is no pre-cancerous genetic activity in your body, we can do an exosome-based blood test and look for over-expressed genes (via RNA) that cancers commonly use. This will give you confidence within just a few weeks, about your current cancer status. If you have a history of cancer in your family or are in remission yourself, you can use this test on an annual basis to ensure you are still cancer free and to catch cancer even before solid tumours have formed, if there is a recurrence.

If you do have a family history of cancer, we can also and provide blood based inherited DNA mutational testing for you in order to determine your risk of cancer, and that of other family members such as your children or siblings.

Newly Diagnosed:

Usually, with standard treatment, to get to the first appointment with an oncologist, you would need to wait 4 to 6 weeks, and in some cases, even longer depending on how urgent the system thinks your case is. The reality is, anytime cancer is growing in your body the situation is urgent. Cancer cells can break away and metastasis to other regions at any time. So, time is crucial when you are newly diagnosed with cancer or have had cancer before or are currently in treatment for cancer.

Our team can have a thorough genetic analysis (using blood or tissue based testing) and personalized treatment plan in the hands of your oncologist within 4-6 weeks – in other words, we can get your oncologist a thorough and personalized list of treatment options for them to prescribe for you, while you are still waiting for your first meeting. We can also assist you in accessing more timely and thorough cancer care if you would like to explore treatment options outside of public healthcare.

3rd Line or Late Stage Patients:

Our team has helped many patients who have been told there are no more options or that they are too late stage for care beyond palliative chemotherapy – there are almost always more and better options that can be identified with thorough genetic testing and which your oncologist can access and prescribe for you once we present them with your test results and treatment options list.

It is never too late to get the right treatment. Even if you’ve already gone through first, second and third lines of treatment and now you’re being told there are no more options for you we can help.

If your doctor has not yet arranged thorough DNA and RNA testing and research for you there are almost certainly FDA and Health Canada Approved options that they could access for you if only they knew which treatments are right for you – and with our genetic testing program they will know with confidence what you need.

At Lody Health, we encourage all of our cancer patients to consider this new science of comprehensive genetic testing and understand what is driving their cancer to grow, which targeted treatment options complement these genetic test results, and essentially, make a well-informed decision with their oncologist, and select the best treatment option available.


Please contact our clinic today for a full cancer care consultation, to see how we can assist you or your loved one better manage this disease.

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