New blood test can detect eight types of cancer

Biotrial blood samples

One is that the cancer-related proteins used by the test reflect tissue damage and can also appear in people with inflammatory diseases such as arthritis. For detection of five cancer types (ovary, liver, stomach, pancreas, and esophagus) for which there are no screening tests available for average-risk individuals, the sensitivities ranged from 69 to 98 percent.

Currently, the CanerSEEK test is being tested in patients not diagnosed with cancer.

The research was published on Friday in the global journal Science, and also had input from Italian researchers.

Companies have been pouring money into developing liquid biopsies.

A picture taken on January 5, 2017 shows blood samples at the headquarters of the Biotrial pharmaceutical laboratory in Rennes, western France.

Scientists have revealed that cancer can now be detected earlier by a new and revolutionary blood test that could spot eight different types of the disease. "I'm enormously excited. This is the Holy Grail - a blood test to diagnose cancer without all the other procedures like scans or colonoscopy". Both CancerSEEK and a PSA test look for proteins.

"We were pleasantly surprised that we could detect the amount of cancers that we were able to detect", Papadopoulos said. The challenge is there are only a very, very small number of these ctDNA fragments to be found.

"We were agreeably shocked that we could identify the measure of tumors that we could distinguish", Papadopoulos said. Meanwhile, invasive cancer tests are unpleasant and can be quite expensive. This can then indicate the presence of ovarian, liver, stomach, pancreatic, oesophageal, bowel, lung or breast cancers.

Many other efforts are under way to develop blood tests for cancer.

"There could be a lot of people who are told they have cancer, who may not have it", said Prof Turner. However, that may not be the full story. If a blood test could find 98 percent of ovarian cancers at an early stage, as these early results suggest, "that would be a significant advance", he said.

Another concern is whether the false-positive rate might be higher in the general population, says Catherine Alix-Panabières, a cancer researcher at the University of Montpellier in France.

Professor Gibbs said with the progress of the technology and with more people partaking of the test, they expected the cost to come down over time. "Almost no systemic therapy we've ever given in pancreatic cancer works, not to an appreciable degree".

Cancer Schmancer was created in 2007 after Fran was misdiagnosed for two years before finding a doctor who correctly detected that she was living with cancer.

There is still some room for improvement. What's unclear, however, is whether CancerSEEK is able to detect undiagnosed cancers, Rosenfeld adds. It can be performed without even knowing a cancer is present, and therefore allow for early diagnosis and more chance of a cure.

The hope is that the test could eventually cost less than $500 and be conducted by a primary care physician, the lead author noted. Furthermore, it doesn't say how advanced the cancer is. "Earlier detection provides many ways to improve outcomes for patients". "We're moving farther down the path toward using (a test like this) for screening". "I$3 f we have a test result that is negative we don't want to give false reassurance to the patient", he said.

CancerSEEK will not be made commercial for at least another year, if not longer.

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