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Tuesday October 04, 2022

A possible game-changer: This blood test detects multiple cancers without symptoms

Shockingly, 70% of participants of study were diagnosed with cancer types that have no standard cancer screening available right now

By Web Desk
September 14, 2022
Image showing a man holding a test tube. — Unsplash
Image showing a man holding a test tube. — Unsplash

A blood test showed several cancers in patients who had not yet shown any symptoms. The Pathfinder Study by GRAIL has done what could be a game-changer for cancer diagnosis.

The test, which was conducted on 6,662 people by the healthcare company focused on cancer screening, found cancer in nearly about 1% of the participants.

Conducted on patients aged 50 or above, the findings were presented at the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) Congress 2022 in Paris.

The test is called Multi-Cancer Early Detection (MCED) test. Researchers explained that the former versions of the test were refined to develop a more accurate test that focuses only on cancer.  The previous version also detected fairly common pre-malignant hematologic conditions.

Jeffrey Venstrom, MD, chief medical officer at GRAIL, said that MCED testing detected double the number of cancers than standard screening.

"These included Stage I cancers of the liver, small intestine, and uterus, and Stage II pancreatic, bone, and oropharyngeal cancers," he said in a statement.

Shockingly, 70% of the participants of the study were diagnosed with cancer types that have no standard cancer screening available right now.

In 92 patients, cancer signal was detected and out of these, 35 were diagnosed with 36 cancers.

Researchers claimed that there was a 97% accuracy for the cancer signal origin prediction. 

The new test can improve cancer screening and lead to better treatment strategies.