Scientists have claimed to have developed a simple blood test that can accurately detect the initial stages of breast and lung cancer. Kansas State University researchers developed the test that can detect cancer before symptoms such as coughing and weight loss begin.
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Basically the test detects increased enzyme activity in the body. Iron nanoparticles coated with amino acids and dyes are presented to trace amounts of blood or urine from a patient. Each type of cancer has its own specific enzyme pattern that can be identified by medical professionals. This enzyme can also tell a doctor if the disease is cancer or something else.
The test is said to be quick because once the test is administered the results are available within about 60 minutes. Researchers have begun testing a new test method that is projected to produce the same results in about five minutes.
Analysis of several data sets showed a 95 per cent success rate in detecting cancer in participants. This includes those with breast cancer in stages 0 and 1 and those with lung cancer in stages 1 and 2. This is a major advancement for cancer screening.
Early detection means a greater chance at providing more timely treatments to cancer patients. It could prolong lives, and in some cases save lives. The blood test will have to undergo more testing and trials before it is widely used, but this particular test looks very promising.
Source: Money Control