updated 2/9/2011 4:16:59 PM ET 2011-02-09T21:16:59

SALT LAKE CITY, Feb. 9, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Myriad Genetics, Inc. (Nasdaq:MYGN) announced today that a study published in Lancet Oncology shows the Company's 46-gene PROLARIS™ molecular diagnostic test significantly predicts prostate cancer outcome. The study demonstrated that a patient's cell cycle progression (CCP) score is a strong indicator of the risk of disease recurrence and death in patients diagnosed with prostate cancer and may play an essential role in determining the appropriate treatment for patients with prostate cancer. The study will appear in an article, entitled "Prognostic value of an RNA expression signature derived from cell cycle proliferation genes in patients with prostate cancer: a retrospective study." 

"These findings have important implications," stated Jerry Lanchbury Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer of Myriad Genetics Inc.  "We believe the study provides very strong evidence that measuring the expression level for this family of genes is central to understanding the aggressiveness of prostate cancer and therefore the appropriate course of treatment." 

The study presented CCP scores on 703 prostate cancer patients; 366 American men who had undergone radical prostatectomy and 337 men in the U.K. with clinically localized prostate cancer diagnosed by a transurethral resection (TURP).   The study demonstrated the CCP score was a significant predictor of disease outcome for both population sets (p = 5.6 x 10-9 and p = 6.1 x 10-22, respectively).  

Moreover, in the TURP patients, the CCP score was the most important variable for predicting death from prostate cancer (p = 8.2 x 10-11) with both PSA and Gleason score contributing to a lesser extent. In the cohort of patients who had undergone radical prostatectomy the CCP score and pre-operative PSA level were the most significant variables in predicting the recurrence of prostate cancer. 

Myriad believes the market need for the PROLARIS™ product stems from the limited ability of current markers to accurately predict prostate cancer aggressiveness. Many men diagnosed with prostate cancer have indolent disease that can be safely monitored with active surveillance, whereas some patients have aggressive cancer and need immediate treatment. The challenge facing all men diagnosed with prostate cancer is to decide whether to have aggressive therapy such as radiation or radical prostatectomy, or to monitor the disease through active surveillance. Overtreatment of prostate cancer and its attendant complications is widely recognized as an important public health issue and places an unnecessary financial burden on the health care system. The PROLARIS™ product, which incorporates the CCP score, was developed to meet this significant need to improve the physician's ability to predict disease outcome and to thereby optimize treatment. 

About PROLARIS

PROLARIS™ consists of a proprietary panel of 46 genes, the majority of which are involved in cell cycle progression and cell growth. PROLARIS™ examines standard prostate tumor tissue available to pathologists to quantitatively assess whether a patient is likely to have a slow growing form of prostate cancer or a more aggressive cancer. PROLARIS™ provides clinicians with a direct molecular measure of a prostate tumor's capacity to divide and grow by examining genes that mediate tumor growth at the molecular level that can be used to determine the aggressiveness of prostate cancer. PROLARIS™ can also be used to estimate the risk of prostate cancer recurrence in patients who have already undergone a radical prostatectomy. 

About Prostate Cancer

In the United States alone, 223,000 men were diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2007 according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. These men may benefit from the information provided by PROLARIS™ risk recurrence assessment. Men diagnosed with prostate cancer have four treatment options; active surveillance, radical prostatectomy, radiation therapy or hormone therapy. A study published in the January/February 2010 edition of Cancer World showed that early aggressive treatment in patients whose cancer is likely to progress slowly, may cause side-effects such as incontinence and erectile dysfunction. The study concluded that this aggressive treatment unnecessarily reduces the quality of patient's lives.

About Myriad Genetics

Myriad Genetics, Inc. (Nasdaq:MYGN) is a leading molecular diagnostic company dedicated to developing and marketing novel predictive, personalized and prognostic medicine products to asses a person's risk of developing disease and guide treatment decisions. Myriad's portfolio of nine molecular diagnostic products are based on an understanding of the role genes play in human disease and were developed with a focus on improving an individual's decision making process for monitoring and treating disease. With fiscal year 2010 annual revenue of over $360 million and approximately 1,000 employees, Myriad is working on strategic initiatives, including new product introductions, companion diagnostics, and international expansion, to take advantage of significant growth opportunities. For more information on how Myriad is making a difference, please visit the Company's website: www.myriad.com

Myriad, the Myriad logo, BRACAnalysis, COLARIS, COLARIS AP, MELARIS, TheraGuide, PREZEON, OnDose, prolaris and PANEXIA are trademarks or registered trademarks of Myriad Genetics, Inc. in the United States and foreign countries.  

The Myriad Genetics, Inc. logo is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=6336

Safe Harbor Statement

This press release contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including statements relating to the ability of the Company's PROLARIS test to significantly predict prostate cancer outcome; the publication of the PROLARIS study in the March 2011 issue of Lancet Oncology; the essential role cell cycle progression (CCP) score may play in determining appropriate treatment for patients with prostate cancer; the significance of the findings of the study and the Company's belief that the study provides very strong evidence that measuring the expression level of this family of genes is central to understanding the aggressiveness of prostate cancer and therefore the appropriate course of treatment; the Company's belief that the market needs for the PROLARIS product stems from the limited ability of current markers to accurately predict prostate cancer aggressiveness; and the number of men who may benefit from the information provided by PROLARIS risk recurrence assessment.

CONTACT:  Rebecca Chambers
          Director, Investor and Public Relations
          (801) 584-1143
          rchamber@myriad.com

© Copyright 2012, GlobeNewswire, Inc. All Rights Reserved

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