Guardant Health Prepares IPO: What's Disrupting the Diagnostics Market?


by Ken Powell, President, Genesis Business Development

The objective of companion diagnostics (CDx) is to maximize that a patient with a particular disease state has the highest probability of responding to a given therapeutic. CDx is now in its second decade of use, and more FDA-approved therapeutics have corresponding CDx labeling. This growing CDx trend will continue as new, novel therapeutics for cancer and other diseases receive regulatory approval.


Other stakeholders see CDx as a way not only to ensure the best possible therapeutic efficacy, but also as a tool to ensure drug cost-effectiveness. Simply put, using CDx helps in assuring that the patient will respond positively to a specific therapeutic regimen, thereby improving quality of care, and reducing unnecessary costs of administering a therapeutic to a non-responding patient. These benefits are important to all involved in healthcare delivery, including clinicians, healthcare providers and payers.


A new transformational technology has emerged that has the potential to revolutionize traditional anatomic pathology and conventional surgical procedures used to obtain tissue samples for pathological examination and diagnosis. The in vitro diagnostics industry has named this new technology “liquid biopsy”. Liquid biopsy only requires a simple patient blood sample, eliminating the time, cost and potential surgical complications associated with tissue biopsies.


The high growth liquid biopsy market is forecasted to increase at a current annual growth rate (CAGR) of over 25% annually through 2022. The companion diagnostics market, which is estimated to produce a CAGR of over 20%, is forecasted to reach over $6.5 billion by the same time. Liquid biopsy is already playing a key role in companion diagnostics and offers several opportunities to profit in this very attractive in vitro diagnostic (IVD) segment.


A key player in the liquid biopsy segment is Guardant Health. The company markets liquid biopsy tests that have been ordered over 70,000 times by 5,000 oncologists. Guardant recently announced that it expects to raise over $237 millionfrom its initial public offering, more than double the $100 million when it filed to list its shares in September. The 12.5 million shares will be priced at approximately $19 per share. To date, the company has raised approximately $550 million from investors. Guardant’s products have many market drivers with built-in growth, due to the global increase in cancer rates, new technologies and other factors.


The liquid biopsy market is in its infancy and is expected to see explosive growth over the next five years. More than 35 diagnostic companies market liquid biopsy offerings. Unprecedented investment in liquid biopsy companies has already taken place, as evidenced by Grail’s raising over $1.6 billion to date. In addition, Roche recently purchased the remaining shares of foundation Medicine for $2.4 billion.
For more information on the liquid biopsy and other high growth IVD markets, please contact your Guidepoint representative and schedule a consultation today.


Please note: This article contains the sole views and opinions of Ken Powell and does not reflect the views or opinions of Guidepoint Global, LLC (“Guidepoint”). Guidepoint is not a registered investment adviser and cannot transact business as an investment adviser or give investment advice. The information provided in this article is not intended to constitute investment advice, nor is it intended as an offer or solicitation of an offer or a recommendation to buy, hold or sell any security. Any use of this article without the express written consent of Guidepoint and Ken Powell is prohibited.


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