A new tool to fight disease. It was made by a team of scientists at the University of Oxford, UK. It is a metabolomic analysis of blood. What does it identify? Different types of cancer and their metastasis in the body. It is the new blood test that detects cancer.
The useful biomarkers
It was observed that blood metabolite profiles are different from person to person. It is different in healthy people, people with metastatic cancer and people with localized cancer. These differences make it possible to identify the cancer. And also its spread, through a blood test.
“Cancer cells have unique metabolomic fingerprints. It’s because of their different metabolic processes. We are only now beginning to understand this. Metabolites produced by tumors can be used as biomarkers. They accurately detect cancer,” explained study co-author James Larkin.
what did they use? Magnetic fields and elevated radio waves. Thus they profiled the levels of natural chemicals (metabolites) in the blood test.
The effectiveness of the test needed to be tested. It was applied to 300 patients with nonspecific cancer symptoms. The results of the study published in Clinical Cancer Research are clear. It diagnosed cancer in 19 of 20 patients. And it identified with 94% accuracy those with metastatic stage disease.
Fast, accurate, cost-effective
“It’s a cancer test that any physician could order. The new blood test that detects cancer is fast and cost-effective. It will allow treatments to be prioritized based on this early information.” Detailed study lead author Fay Probert.
Scientists have demonstrated the usefulness of this technology. It successfully identifies whether patients with multiple sclerosis are progressing to the later stages of the disease. It does so even before trained physicians are aware of it. They find it surprising that the same technology now shows promise in other diseases such as cancer.