BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Medical Policy Manual

Proteomic Testing for Targeted Therapy in Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer


Proteomics is the large-scale study of proteomes. A proteome is a set of proteins produced in an organism, tissue, or cell. It includes the study of changes in protein expression patterns as related to diseases. Proteomic testing (e.g.. VeriStrat) is proposed as a blood-based predictive and prognostic test for individuals with non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) who test negative for EGFR mutations (EGFR wild-type) or whose EGFR mutation status is unknown and for individuals who have not responded to first line therapies. The test relies on a predictive algorithm analysis of pretreatment serum to generate a good or poor assessment for response to tyrokinase inhibitors (TKIs).




The evidence for the use of serum proteomic testing to select targeted therapy in individuals with non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) who are EGFR wild-type or have unknown EGFR status who have disease progression after first-line treatment is limited. The evidence is insufficient to determine the effects of the technology on health outcomes.


BlueCross BlueShield Association. Evidence Positioning System. (4:2018). Proteomic testing for targeted therapy in non-small-cell lung cancer (2.04.125). Retrieved October 30, 2018 from (46 articles and/or guidelines reviewed)

Grossi, F., Rijavec, E., Genova, C., Barletta, G., Biello, F., Maggioni, C., (2016). Serum proteomic test in advanced non-squamous non-small cell lung cancer treated in first line with standard chemotherapy. British Journal of Cancer, 116, 36-43. (Level 2 evidence)

Hornberger, J., Hirsch, F., Q, Li., & Page, R. (2015). Outcome and economic implications of proteomic test-guided second-or third-line treatment for advanced non-small cell lung cancer: extended analysis of the PROSE trial. Lung Cancer, 88 (2), 223-230, Abstract retrieved March 3, 2016 from PubMed database.

National Comprehensive Cancer Network. (2016). NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology (NCCN Guidelines®). Non-small cell lung cancer. Version 2.2018. Retrieved January 5, 2018 from the National Comprehensive Cancer Network.

Peters, S., Stahel, R.A., Dafni, U., Ponce, A., Massuti, B., Gautschi, O, et al. (2017). Randomized phase III trial of erlotinib versus docetaxel in patients with advanced squamous cell non-small cell lung cancer failing first-line platinum-based doublet chemotherapy stratified by VeriStrat good versus VeriStrat poor. The European thoracic oncology platform (ETOP) EMPHASIS-lung trial. Journal of Thoracic Oncology, 12 (4), 752-762. Abstract retrieved January 5, 2018 from PubMed database.

Tanvetyanon, T., Creelan, B., Chiappori, A. (2014). Current clinical application of genomic and proteomic profiling in non-small-cell lung cancer. Cancer Control, 21 (1), 32-39. (Level 4 evidence)




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