The Sustainable Predictive Oncology Therapeutics and Diagnostics quality assurance pilot study (SPOT/Dx pilot) on molecular oncology next-generation sequencing (NGS) reportedly demonstrated performance limitations of NGS laboratory-developed tests, including discrepancies with a US Food and Drug Administration–approved companion diagnostic. The SPOT/Dx pilot methods differ from those used in proficiency testing (PT) programs.


To reanalyze SPOT/Dx pilot data using PT program methods and compare to PT program data.


The College of American Pathologists (CAP) Molecular Oncology Committee reanalyzed SPOT/Dx pilot data applying PT program methods, adjusting for confounding conditions, and compared them to CAP NGS PT program performance (2019–2022).


Overall detection rates of KRAS and NRAS single-nucleotide variants (SNVs) and multinucleotide variants (MNVs) by SPOT/Dx pilot laboratories were 96.8% (716 of 740) and 81.1% (129 of 159), respectively. In CAP PT programs, the overall detection rates for the same SNVs and MNVs were 97.2% (2671 of 2748) and 91.8% (1853 of 2019), respectively. In 2022, the overall detection rate for 5 KRAS and NRAS MNVs in CAP PT programs was 97.3% (1161 of 1193).


CAP PT program data demonstrate that laboratories consistently have high detection rates for KRAS and NRAS variants. The SPOT/Dx pilot has multiple design and analytic differences with established PT programs. Reanalyzed pilot data that adjust for confounding conditions demonstrate that laboratories proficiently detect SNVs and less successfully detect rare to never-observed MNVs. The SPOT/Dx pilot results are not generalizable to all molecular oncology testing and should not be used to market products or change policy affecting all molecular oncology testing.

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The authors have no relevant financial interest in the products or companies described in this article.

The identification of specific products or scientific instrumentation is considered an integral part of the scientific endeavor and does not constitute endorsement or implied endorsement on the part of the authors, Department of Defense, or any component agency. The views expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not reflect the official policy of the Department of Army/Navy/Air Force, Department of Defense, or the US government. All authors are current or past members of the College of American Pathologists (CAP) Molecular Oncology Committee or the CAP Genomic Medicine Committee, except Long, Souers, and Vasalos, who are employees of the CAP.

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