New blood diopsy test could herald new age in cancer treatment

GETTY Images Ovarian cancer symptoms The condition affects the ovaries which stores eggs

GETTY Images Ovarian cancer symptoms The condition affects the ovaries which stores eggs

Promising new research enables scientists to use a blood test to screen for different types of cancers at early stages.

Doctors say it opens the possibility of treatment for cancers that are often hard or impossible to cure because they can not be detected early enough, saving more lives, and slashing medical costs.

Talking to Chris Hollins on the talkRADIO breakfast show, Dr Dawn Harper from Embarrassing Bodies, said: "When we develop cancer it's because of a mutation in the cells, so what this blood test is doing is looking for that change".

New research on the liquid biopsy will be presented at the annual conference of the American Society of Clinical Oncology in Chicago, which began Thursday.

The results to be presented at the U.S. medical conference are for more than 1,400 people, of whom 561 were cancer-free, with no diagnosis, while 845 had been newly diagnosed with the disease. While it detected ovarian cancer with 90 percent success rate, for example, only 10 instances of this type of cancer were detected throughout the testing period.

Simon Stevens, NHS England chief executive, said the test could "dramatically transform" cancer care.

"Far too many cancers are picked up too late, when it is no longer possible to operate and the chances of survival and slim", he said.

The results showed that the test most accurately diagnosed ovarian cancer, with 90% accuracy, followed by hepatobiliary - a highly lethal cancer that attacks the liver and gallbladder - and pancreatic cancer, with 80% accuracy.


"To match the promise of being able to screen for cancer, this test must be able to identify patients who do not have symptoms or signs of cancer".

"This is potentially the holy grail of cancer research, to find cancers that are now hard to cure at an earlier stage when they are easier to cure, and we hope this test could save many lives", said Dr Eric Klein, the lead author of the study from the Cleveland Centre in Ohio.

Ovarian cancer patient Jane Howarth, 54, from Manchester, has been taking niraparib for nine months.

On average, cancer rates in the United Kingdom have increased by seven per cent in the last decade, however, in women, the number of diagnoses have risen by a whopping nine per cent in the last ten years.

However, it was less effective at detecting stomach, uterine and early-stage prostate cancer, the authors said.

The researchers stress further clinical development is needed.

There is a "huge interest" in developing liquid biopsy for cancer, Takabe told Live Science, because the tests could have the potential to catch cancer very early.

Recommended News

  • Justice Nasirul Mulk takes oath as caretaker Pakistan PM

    Justice Nasirul Mulk takes oath as caretaker Pakistan PM

    He worked as lawyer and judge for several years before his appointment as the 22nd Chief Justice of Pakistan in 2014. Justice (retd) Nasirul Mulk was unanimously nominated as Caretaker Prime Minister by the government and opposition.
    England prepares for World Cup with 2-1 win over Nigeria

    England prepares for World Cup with 2-1 win over Nigeria

    There was little the Everton shotstopper could've done to deny Alex Iwobi from netting against England . England kept the pressure on as Sterling and Stones both had chances that nearly went in.
    2nd Test: England 106/2 in reply to Pakistan's 174 on Day 1

    2nd Test: England 106/2 in reply to Pakistan's 174 on Day 1

    England will be banking heavily on Cook's performance for the upcoming 5-Test series against India. In fact, the hosts will slump to seventh position on ICC Test Rankings if they face a whitewash.
  • Atlas Tube CEO critical of Canada's retaliation against US  tariffs

    Atlas Tube CEO critical of Canada's retaliation against US tariffs

    The EU also started the process of filing a complaint with the World Trade Organization . But companies in the USA that use imported steel will face higher costs.
    Virginia General Assembly votes to expand Medicaid

    Virginia General Assembly votes to expand Medicaid

    As a doctor, I'm so proud of the significant step we've taken together to help Virginians get quality, affordable care. Members of Virginia's hospital community extend honest thanks to all those who have been instrumental in this effort.
    No takers for Air India: What will Modi government do now?

    No takers for Air India: What will Modi government do now?

    Earlier this month, the government had extended the EoI submission deadline to May 31 from the previous date of May 14. Choubey had earlier made it clear that AI will not be sold unless the government gets a right price for it.
  • Trump signs 'Right-to-try' bill for terminally ill patients

    Trump signs 'Right-to-try' bill for terminally ill patients

    President Donald Trump has signed a bill into law aimed at helping terminally ill patients. Trump predicted hopefully, "We're going to be saving tremendous numbers of lives".
    2.3 million workers to get pay rise

    2.3 million workers to get pay rise

    ACTU secretary Sally McManus welcomed the decision, saying it was the biggest percentage increase the commission has awarded. Resident caretakers will see an 11.5 percent in their minimum wage. "Business conditions remain positive".
    Porsche gets crunched in valet parking mishap

    Porsche gets crunched in valet parking mishap

    A HOTEL valet at Sydney's Hyatt Regency lost control of a Porsche sports auto yesterday and wedged it beneath another vehicle. A witness Jonathan Bouzaid at the accident said the valet appeared to have panicked after hitting a vehicle in front of him.
  • Years Later: Hit-and-Run Kills Man Who Fatally Struck Carolee Ashby

    Years Later: Hit-and-Run Kills Man Who Fatally Struck Carolee Ashby

    Bystanders and ballplayers scattered to avoid the vehicle as it drove erratically on the ballfield, police said. Let's come together to show community pride and help these boys feel safe to return to their beloved field".
    Jeep's Maruti Brezza-rivaling compact SUV

    Jeep's Maruti Brezza-rivaling compact SUV

    Fiat is already working on the next-generation 4X4 Panda and it will serve as a flawless base for the upcoming baby Jeep. Apart from the compact Jeep, the carmaker has also confirmed plans to introduce a "three-row mid-size UV" in India.
    Jury Awards Family Of Black Man Killed By White Police Officer $4.00

    Jury Awards Family Of Black Man Killed By White Police Officer $4.00

    Ken Mascara, the sheriff, was found to be only 1 percent liable, given that Hill was under the influence of alcohol. Hill's probation was also set to "automatically terminate" 11 days before his shooting, he said.

We are pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news.
Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper.
Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.