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NEW YORK – Bayer and Canadian diagnostics firm LifeLabs said on Wednesday that they have launched a program to offer free genetic testing to identify rare NTRK gene fusions in cancer patients in Canada who may be eligible for targeted treatment.

NTRK fusions occur in less than 1 percent of solid tumors. In 2019, Health Canada approved larotrectinib (Bayer's Vitrakvi) for adults and pediatric patients with refractory solid tumors who have NTRK fusions and are out of treatment options. This was the first time regulators in Canada approved a tissue-agnostic indication for a drug.

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NTRK fusions are oncogenic drivers in a variety of tumors.

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