- New York-based scientists detect 35 cancer cases using test
- But another 57 people were wrongly told that they had the disease from the kit.
- It was not possible to determine how accurate the test was because 6,000 participants were not examined using standard tests at the same time
- Scientists use Galerie blood test that looks for signs of 50 cancers, including breast, lung and kidney
A blood test that can detect 50 types of cancer has shown ‘promise’ in early tests, scientists said – after previously looking at the disease in healthy people.
New York-based scientists detected 35 cases of cancer using the test, but another 57 were misdiagnosed.
It was not possible to determine its accuracy because 6,000 participants were not examined using standard tests at the same time.
The Galerie blood test uses a single swab to look for signs made by multiple cancers, including types affecting the breasts, lungs, and kidneys. Scientists say it has great promise in early detection of certain cancers, such as pancreatic, while current tests can only detect them at later stages when the chances of survival are low.
It’s available on prescription for $949-a-pack, but experts say the test shouldn’t be used in place of standard screening procedures.
Scientists at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, who conducted the research, said that although the test was good, it still needed to be refined. It comes just a day after President Joe Biden unveiled a plan to reduce cancer deaths to 300,000 a year by 2042, pooling millions of dollars to develop blood tests for it.
New York-based scientists detected 35 cases of cancer using the test, but another 57 people were misdiagnosed (file photo)
The results of the study were presented today at the annual congress of the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO), held in Paris, France.
The trial recruited 6,621 people over the age of 50 who were otherwise healthy.
Each had a blood sample taken which was run through a gallery test to check for cancer.
How does the gallery cancer test work?
The Gallerie cancer test works by checking the blood for signs that may indicate cancer.
Its developers say the test can detect more than 50 types of cancer, including those usually only picked up by routine screening in the late stages.
It works by looking for chemical changes in pieces of the genetic code — cell-free DNA (cfDNA) — that leak from the tumor into the bloodstream.
Some cancerous tumors are known to shed DNA in the blood long before a person begins to experience symptoms.
Galerie says it takes about 10 days to complete a test.
They say their test should be used in conjunction with general screening programs.
Scientists found in clinical trials that cancer was detected correctly in 51.5% of cases in this test.
The test is available on prescription in the US for about $949-a-pack.
The tests work by searching for signs of cancer in the blood released by tumors, and are able to pick up more than 50 types because each gives the same different signal.
The results showed that 92 patients tested positive for cancer.
But after putting each one through a routine check-up, it turned out only 35 (or 38 percent of the total) actually had the disease.
Those patients who were not screened separately for certain cancers were completely undiagnosed.
But a year after the trial, 86 more participants were diagnosed with cancer.
It was not clear whether he already had cancer at the time of the test or was not present at the time of the test.
Turns out that fourteen of the cancers were in stage I or II – when they are easier to treat – and seven were found in people who had cancer in the past.
A type of circulatory cancer called lymphoma was the most frequent (12 patients), followed by cancers of the breasts (five), blood (three), colon and rectum (two), prostate (two) and throat (two).
There was also one case of liver, pancreatic, small intestine, ovary, uterus, bone, plasma cell and bile duct cancers.
And one patient who tested positive using the tests was found to have cancer of both breast and uterus, the scientists said.
Data were not collected on whether earlier diagnosis had improved patients’ chances of survival.
Commenting on the research, a release from the ESMO conference said the trial showed ‘promise’ in the study.
Oncologist Dr Deb Schrag, who led the research, said: ‘This study indicates that hope is on the horizon for detecting currently unscreened cancers, but certainly a lot more work is needed and with experience and a larger sample. , [this] will improve.
‘The tests need to be refined so that they are better able to separate tumor DNA from all other DNA circulating in the blood.’
It comes as Biden announced yesterday promoting his ‘cancer moonshot’ program, saying he planned to cut deaths from it in half over the next two decades.
To achieve this, the president said he would spend millions of dollars developing diagnostic tests for cancer. The final amount has not been disclosed yet.
The fight against cancer is personal for Biden, who lost his son Beau to brain cancer in 2015.
Credit: www.dailymail.co.uk /