AstraZeneca and Lucence Collaborate in South-East Asia to bring HRD Testing to Ovarian Cancer Patients to guide PARPi Treatment

News | November 10, 2021

AstraZeneca Singapore and Lucence announced today that they have entered into an agreement to provide improved access to Homologous Recombination Deficiency (HRD) testing for newly-diagnosed advanced ovarian cancer patients in the South-East Asia (SEA) region.

In 2020, the incidence of ovarian cancer in Asia alone accounts for more than half (54.4%) of the worldwide incidence1, and is the 5th most common cancer in Singapore2. Typically, patients are initially treated with surgery and chemotherapy. Recently, studies have shown that PARPi, either alone or in combination, when used as first-line therapy could improve progression-free survival rates, particularly for patients with tumors that cannot repair a type of DNA damage3.  HRD status is the biomarker that characterizes these tumors.

Approximately 1 out of 2 women with advanced ovarian cancer is HRD-positive4. Knowing the HRD status of a patient is important as it has predictive and prognostic values and serves to inform treatment decisions using PARPi that are associated with enhanced progression-free survival in HRD-positive patients.

AstraZeneca has been active in developing healthcare innovation partnerships and has launched more than 20 health innovation hubs around the world, known as the A.Catalyst Network. Under this initiative, AstraZeneca has signed MoUs with leading healthcare innovators and organisations in Singapore, focusing on using AI, big data and genomics to help people with chronic diseases, accelerating innovation and ensuring that more patients can get access to the latest health tech solutions.

“This partnership with Lucence accentuates AstraZeneca’s ongoing push to tap into the expertise of healthcare innovators to help those suffering from chronic conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and cancer,” said Vinod Narayanan, Country President for AstraZeneca Singapore. “With the advancement in diagnostics for gynecological oncology, we believe this will allow more ovarian cancer patients to benefit from targeted therapies.”

“We are glad to offer an option for cancer patients and physicians in the region,” said Dr. Min-Han Tan, Founding CEO and Medical Director at Lucence. “Lucence is excited to integrate our diagnostic capabilities in BRCA-mutant cancers and precision oncology database with AstraZeneca’s world-renowned pharmaceutical expertise to help awareness and accessibility of HRD testing in the community.”



  1. Sung, H., Ferlay, J., Siegel, R. L., Laversanne, M., Soerjomataram, I., Jemal, A., & Bray, F. (2021). Global cancer statistics 2020: GLOBOCAN estimates of incidence and mortality worldwide for 36 cancers in 185 countries. CA: a cancer journal for clinicians, 71(3), 209-249.
  2. Teo, M. C., & Soo, K. C. (2013). Cancer trends and incidences in Singapore. Japanese journal of clinical oncology, 43(3), 219-224.
  3. Franzese, E., Diana, A., Centonze, S., Pignata, S., De Vita, F., Ciardiello, F., & Orditura, M. (2020). PARP Inhibitors in first-line therapy of ovarian cancer: Are there any doubts?. Frontiers in Oncology, 10, 782.
  4. Konstantinopoulos, P. A., Ceccaldi, R., Shapiro, G. I., & D’Andrea, A. D. (2015). Homologous recombination deficiency: exploiting the fundamental vulnerability of ovarian cancer. Cancer discovery, 5(11), 1137-1154.
  5. Ray-Coquard, I., Pautier, P., Pignata, S., Pérol, D., González-Martín, A., Berger, R., … & Harter, P. (2019). Olaparib plus bevacizumab as first-line maintenance in ovarian cancer. New England Journal of Medicine, 381(25), 2416-2428.
  6. Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. (2020, May 11). FDA approves olaparib plus bevacizumab as maintenance treatment for ovarian, fallopian tube, or primary peritoneal cancers. U.S. Food and Drug Administration.