PetDx and IDEXX partner for expanded access to novel cancer test for dogs


The collaborative effort makes OncoK9 liquid biopsy available immediately to more veterinary customers

PetDx, a company using genomics to improve pet health, announced today a collaboration with IDEXX Laboratories, Inc, that will significantly broaden access to canine cancer liquid biopsy testing.1

Through the partnership, PetDx’s OncoK9, the first liquid biopsy test for the detection of cancer in dogs, will be available later this month to all veterinary customers served by IDEXX Reference Laboratories in the United States and Canada.1

“We are excited about IDEXX’s support of our noninvasive cancer testing solutions,” said PetDx Chief Operating Officer Kalle Marsal, in a company press release.1 “Working closely with the industry leader will accelerate our efforts to equip the market with this breakthrough innovation, and ultimately benefit many dogs, their families, and the veterinarians that manage their care.”

Launched in 2021, OncoK9 relies on genomic analysis, leveraging next-generation sequencing (NGS) technology and proprietary bioinformatics algorithms to offer new cancer-detection capabilities. The collaboration between PetDx and IDEXX aims to expedite access to OncoK9, which requires a simple blood draw.1

“IDEXX understands the challenges that veterinarians are experiencing when it comes to diagnosing, staging, and treating cancer,” said Jay Mazelsky, IDEXX President and Chief Executive Officer, in a company press release.2 “As veterinarians strive to advance the standard of care for their patients, we continue to support them through innovations like accessible genomic cancer diagnostic tests and services.”

According to investigators, cancer is the leading cause of death in dogs, with an estimated 6 million new cancer diagnoses made each year in the United States population of approximately 90 million pet dogs. In the CANDiD (CANcer Detection in Dogs) study, sponsored by PetDx, OncoK9 demonstrated the ability to detect cancer with sensitivity and specificity performance mirroring that of liquid biopsy tests recently developed for cancer screening in human patients.1,3

The CANDiD study had 1100 client-owned dogs from which whole blood samples were collected at 41 sites across the US, Canada, Brazil, the Netherlands, France, and Hong Kong between November 2019 and August 2021. Subjects, which included dogs diagnosed with cancer and those presumably cancer-free, were divided into independent training (n=224) and testing (n=876) sets.3

In the testing set, the liquid biopsy returned a positive result in 117 of 137 subjects that had been diagnosed with 1 of the 3 most aggressive canine cancers: lymphoma, hemangiosarcoma and osteosarcoma.3

Also in the testing set, 146 of 236 subjects that had been diagnosed with a single primary cancer received a positive result with the liquid biopsy test. These subjects each had a diagnosis of 1 of the 8 most common types of cancer in dogs: lymphoma, hemangiosarcoma, osteosarcoma, soft tissue sarcoma, mast cell tumor, mammary gland carcinoma, anal sac adenocarcinoma, and malignant melanoma.3

Additionally in the testing set, the liquid biopsy test returned a positive result for 192 of 351 subjects with cancer that were not restricted to a certain cancer type. In this cohort, OnocoK9 detected cancer signal in 30 distinct cancer types.3

Overall, the specificity of the test was 98.5%, according to investigators.3

CANDiD study investigators concluded that the liquid biopsy test demonstrated robust multicancer detection capabilities and that the results suggest utility as a noninvasive method for detecting a wide spectrum of canine cancers. According to these investigators, OncoK9 is NGS-based cancer testing with comparable performance to those used in human health.3

The expanded accessibility made possible by the PetDx and IDEXX collaboration allows more veterinarians to use this state-of-the-art test.1


  1. PetDx and IDEXX Expand Access to OncoK9, the Cancer Liquid Biopsy Test for Dogs. News release. PetDx. January 13, 2022.
  2. IDEXX enables improved cancer diagnosis and personalized care through expanded oncology offering. News release. IDEXX. January 13, 2022. Accessed January 13, 2022.
  3. Clinical validation of OncoK9, a blood-based multi-cancer early detection “liquid biopsy” test for dogs. PetDx. Accessed January 13, 2022.
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